Jackoatsmon's Blog

February 14, 2012

Social Change and Generational Rebellion

Filed under: Uncategorized — jackoatsmon @ 1:26 pm

I was talking to a couple of colleagues and were discussing the changing social norms these days.  How getting a divorce is common and socially acceptable.  How sex outside marriage seems to have become acceptable.  The list can go on and on.

In a way, we have become more tolerant.  I suppose that we do not want to offend or lose our friends / relations.  Someone got pregnant prior to their marriage?  Its understandable.  Someone got divorced?  Its normal.  I remember when I was young, a divorce was something that was extremely rare and horrifying.  I remember how shocked I was when I first heard about a divorce within my extended family.  The next thing I knew, there were divorces happening all over the place.  Sex outside of marriage?  The media has lead the charge and made it a norm to have multiple partners.  It has become such that if you want to maintain the moral standards and behavior of the past generations and disassociate yourself from those with loose morals, you will quickly find yourself living in self imposed isolation.

I wonder if the change in moral standards is due to rebellion against the establishment.  At one time, acceptable dressing was to be fully covered from the neck down.  Then came the mini skirt.  This was frowned upon by the adults of the time and I supposed thus gleefully embraced by the youths of the time.  Of course, the youths eventually grew up and became the establishment.  The establishment now accepted a different standard of dressing that was more relaxed than the generation before theirs.  But the youths of the time still felt a need to rebel against the establishment and along came micro-minis, punks, goths, etc.

The barely dressed youths of today, the punks and goths will one day become the adults of tomorrow.  They will become the new establishment.  What then will be the standards of society?  What will be the acceptable clothing and standards of behavior?  The youths of tomorrow will still feel a need to rebel against the establishment.  How will they do it?  Considering the amount of clothes (or lack thereof) that the current youths are wearing, they will have to go naked if they wish to continue the current trend.  I like to imagine that we will reach a time when the youths will rebel by covering up as much as possible, lose all but the most minimal amount of makeup and start holding on to a puritan-like sense of morality.  It will be a strange sight to behold and one which I am quite glad that I will be unlikely to see.

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