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20 Something essays by 20 something writers

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Different generations have been branded differently. We have the Baby Boomers who are now the dads and moms and even grandparents of society. They were followed by the GenXers characterized by grunge, angst and rebellion. The generation that followed the GenXers is now grownup. No fixed generational term has been applied to the twentysomethings of today, but common terms are GenY, post-GenX, or Millenials.

Even without the term that might describe this generation, Kellogg’s 20 Twenty Something essays by Twentysomething Writers provide a venue for this generation to speak for itself. One of the essays that struck me was the article of Theodora Stites on the status and identity of young adults in social networking sites in the World Wide Web. The toys and the venues for socialization of young people these days have been focused on online interactions and transactions.

Interactions online offer a way for young adults to be anonymous and they can explore areas of their personalities which they could not when they are face to face with people. At times, Friendster and MySpace are more powerful tools for socialization than do parties and face-to-face interactions because they give a sense of power and anonymity, which enables young adults to show facets of their personality they would not otherwise show.

Furthermore, pursuits, hobbies, dreams and fantasies may be played out more freely in these venues as Stites’ experience shows. By being hooked to the Internet most of the time, a kind of alter-ego is being developed by a young adult, which might not necessarily coincide with his or her offline identity. Interestingly, the dynamics of online social networking is defining this present generation.

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