The Dumbest Generation: My Initial Response Finally Making a Public Debut!

Okay, so I am not quite sure I realized this until about halfway through the first chapter, but according to this book.  I am one of those that which Mr. Mark Bauerlein considers to be in the Youth of the “Dumbest Generation.”  At first I was reading through thinking to myself, “Oh, this describes my students in almost every way possible…”  Then after reading through most of the resources and research that Bauerlein refers to, I realized, “Oh My Gosh, I was 22 in 2007!” This falls right into the categories of most of the surveys and research studies that he discusses.  The particular survey that made me realize this was the 2007 Pew survey on “What Americans Know: 1989-2007.”

So, now I’m wondering, “What does that make me at this point?”  My initial reaction is to take offense to this now that I realize I am a youth of this generation.  However, I do not think that I can take offense… I mean I am reading his book, right?  And looking at some of the things that he discusses about how this generation has so much easy access to the information and to become better informed citizens, I do not know if technology can be the blame for all of it.  As a teacher, I find myself wondering if there is more that I should be doing to help them understand these texts that the youth, including myself, bypass every day without giving any thought to it.  Bauerlein says, “I’m speaking of intellectual habits and repositories of knowledge, not anything else.”  So, he is not criticizing the fact that they are stupid and do not have any intellect or knowledge, but he is saying that their habits  and their ability to keep knowledge should be questioned.  This I can agree with… for myself, I mean I feel that I do read quite a bit, but maybe not enough.  I never actually timed out how much time a spend reading versus messing around on the computer on Facebook or playing Words with Friends or watching TV.  It would be interesting to gauge this, and it might even be worth seeing what students would say about this…

I just hope that in the next chapters he will give ideas about how to actually help solve this problem…


About ajackson122

I am a high school English teacher and have been for the past five years. I enjoy teaching, coaching, traveling, reading, writing, and watching films.

Posted on July 8, 2012, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

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