Generation Me

February 10, 2009
By Anonymous

What 'Generation Me' Means to Me Before I begin to discuss the book, I must first off mention I
do not read many nonfiction books other than textbooks, and particularly not ones that have such an
in depth view of psychology. Generation Me: Why Today's Young Americans Are More Confident,
Assertive, Entitled-and More Miserable Than Ever Before, by Professor Jean M. Twenge of San Diego
State University, is one of the most profound views of human life I have been able to consider. Its
purpose is to simply explain the many reasons for the large break in common American customs and
traditional views of thinking, by the new age generation of America. That is those, who were born
during the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s. Despite the fact that the author is highly liberal and sporadic
in ideas, the book highlights a myriad of ideas and differences that her generation has come to
face. Reading this book has been highly beneficial to my own conservative views, and I believe I
have come to be more tolerant of others, as the book so highly strives to point out where exactly,
the young men and women of this country are coming from, and how they might be able to help
themselves be more successful. But don't be fooled by the author's Ph.D. in psychology, despite
the many personal experiences that she shares with the reader about teen's anxiety, attitude,
views toward sex, career competition, break from traditional American customs, etc. She also
provides a copious amount of logical data to support her reasoning. How long it took her to record
and formats all this data into one book, is beyond me. She mentions so many facts and numbers that
they are practically coming out of your ears. Not to worry though, for she actively helps to explain
her main points for mentioning such items. This book however, was as much a logical and
psychological representation of my generation, as it was a self-help book. Even though I already
knew much of what she was telling me about teens, it was optimistic and reassuring to feel like
I'm not alone in this world. And this of course brings me to the next topic of the novel, which is
what I would like to say is the theme. And the theme is Narcissism. Narcissism, or my definition of
the word, is simply a severe love for oneself so great that you are willing to put yourself before
others. When I first read the introduction of the book, Twenge's words of wisdom about our
generation really just made me feel guilty. She describes how all of us young ones really do have
such burning desires in our striving for excellence, that we do forget about those around us. I
often find myself describing my future in most of my conversations with others. But as the book
further developed the concept, I felt like her concept of Narcissism was balanced with her views
of Self-Esteem. She comments of how highly important Self-Esteem is, but a overly large amount can
or will result in Narcissism. And she believes that in today's world, a Narcissist simply cannot
coexist in healthy relationships with others. Her best example of this concept is the college
student who brings his girlfriend to one of his fraternity parties, gets a award for 'The Most
Hook Ups' over spring break, she walks out on the party, and he then blames her for ruining a good
time. Aside from Narcissism, Twenge does an incredible job at discussing many other minor subjects
as well. I was somewhat astounded by her humor on the topic of sex and her knowledge of many strange
cases of how many different ideas have been brought toward the topic. Its not particularly a topic
that I would like to address, but it most certainly desires most attention because of the large
number of teen pregnancies across America. I was more interested when she referred to the topics
that had more to deal with our generation as individuals, and less interested in what had to do with
relationships. So I found the topics about self-esteem, narcissism, career path views, and basically
our life dreams to be what really stuck out to me in the book. She tells of how our parents have
raised us on this concept that you can be whatever you want, but in reality you see that this
Narcissism developed by over supportive parents and adults in our community have resulted in too
high of expectations upon graduating college and failure in America's work force from being unable
to understand criticism. Overall, I highly enjoyed the book; I would recommend it to all members of
society, except young children, because some of the topics are highly inappropriate. The reader will
at sometimes be bogged down by the high amounts of logical data, but will pull through from the
author's analysis. And as a student, I 'm prepared that after I'm a senior in college, I
graduate to become freshmen in life.

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