Interesting post over at Z Man’s about generational politics. But in addition to the inevitable NABALT from the Boomers in his readership,* Z Man made the mistake of brinigng up Allied bombing raids in World War II, so cue the spergout.** But it’s a fun topic nonetheless. I don’t have much to add, so please indulge some noodling:
I wonder if they have discussions like this on the Left? My initial read is no — as your typical Leftist was raised by a single mom (=in daycare dawn to dusk, being “raised” by whatever minimum wage drone they employed that week), they don’t really see the impact of “generations.” On the other hand, Leftism is just Daddy Issues writ large, so there must be something to it. On the third hand (hello, Chernobyl!), every single one of them is the specialist snowflake that is, was, or ever could be, so even if you pointed out their remarkable similarity to everyone else in their cohort, they’d deny it… so probably not.
And this is where the laity might get confused about the role of the university, if they ever thought about it (seriously, though: If you find yourself being confused about the role of the university, or thinking about it at all, and you’re not directly employed by one, seek therapy). There are, after all, entire academic fields that should have an interest in this kind of thing — History of course, but also Cultural Studies and American Studies.*** Alas, the ivory tower doesn’t work like that. They’re against the familiy, you see, and have been since Engels, so studying it falls to the feminists (who — I bet you’ll never guess! — have labeled it a patriarchal imposition of the CisHetPat capitalists). If you want to study this kind of thing, you’ll have to do it yourself.
Fortunately, stuff like Project Gutenberg makes it pretty easy. Heck, the Penguin Classics do, if you do it right. Pick popular or significant works about 30 years apart and read them back to back. They might as well have been written on different planets. You can even do this with YouTube, if you like — aside from the ship having the same name, Star Trek TNG has nothing at all to do with the original. See also any show recently remade (McGyver etc.) — the new version looks like it was made by Martians.
*Reminds me of an old joke about a preacher began a sermon with, “I’ve noticed there are some women in my flock who take every general statement as if it applies to them personally.” Immediately every woman in the congregation jumped up and yelled “No I don’t!”
**Irrelevant to the topic or the spergout, but who says Germans don’t have a sense of humor? Goering, the head of the Luftwaffe, said at the beginning of the war that if one Allied bomber were seen over Berlin, his name was Meyer. From there on out, every time an air raid siren went off, Berliners would start waving at the sky and shout “Hello, Herr Meyer!”
***In which you get your PhD by reading the whole run of a comic book and comparing it to Star Trek while ranting about capitalism.