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Generation Gap

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People’s lifestyles and behaviors towards life changes through every generation. In my country, there are many differences between our generations and our parents’ generation. Young generations are more open-minded, active and adaptable to the changes of life than the older ones. Looking at the past, we can easily see that our parents are more reserved in enlarging their relationships with other people and have a narrower point of view towards life. In contrast, young people now are always eager to make friends with other people whether they are male or female, whatever country they come from. We also consider marriage in a more open way, we can get married to the one we love, not the one our parents have chosen for us. In addition, the young generation now has more chances in finding jobs; therefore, failing to go to universities doesn’t mean we will be unemployed in the future as our parents used to think. Thus, it is obvious that the young generation have a wider view of life than the older one.

Furthermore, the young people now are more active in life. As we can observe, many students who are still in high school have started to find a job as an intern. They think that this will help them gain more experience, then they can work better after graduating from universities. This is absolutely opposite to our parents’ generation, at their times our parents often waited until they were qualified enough to get a job, so it took more time of theirs to get used to the new environment in the offices. Finally, young generation adapts to the changes of life better. For example, in 10 years till now, the Internet has developed so much and it is estimated that there are always new models of computer each year to match to this development. While our parents find it hard to remember how to operate a computer, we find it easy to get used to it and apply it to our work and study; therefore, our results at schools are improved a lot.

It is a fact of life that the generation gap or “clash” is something that has existed and will continue to exist as long as man exists on this earth. It is not restricted to certain parts of the world, to certain times of human history or to certain cultures. That is why this “clash” is a fact of a life accepted by all generations, all over the world and through all time. Generation gap is a more modern term for the difference between generations, or milder than the extreme definition which calls this difference as the “clash” between the opinions, the attitudes and the behaviors of the younger and the older generations. The inevitable progress of time and technologies makes the introduction of new ideas, new believes, and new values unavoidable. As a result this difference in the general outlook at life arises which is manifest in the difference of opinions and social values, in addition to the difference mannerism and behavior between young people and older people within the family as well as within the social contexts. Perhaps, the generation gap that exists now between the younger and older generation can best be indicated by the difference of ideas between the young people and the older people in the family, namely the grand parents and the aunts or uncles who might be much older than their nieces and nephews, as is the case in “such” societies.

Where bigamy is legal. The technological advances play a great rule in enlarging the gap as the younger generations are quicker to accept and adopt these technologies so that they consider the conservative and technologically suspicious elders of their families very old fashioned in their, tastes, opinions and out looks toward life. On the other hand, the older people despise the modern values which they call the” internet” and “globalization” values. They consider the young generation shallow, lacking knowledge and moral depth. This difference can best be seen in the difference of interests and hobbies. The young people of today get their knowledge from the “internet”, and they hardly read other than light magazines, while the elders of their hard-earned, profound book based knowledge.

The difference includes the moral and social values, as the different generations see notions such as marriage, love, happiness, decency, and decorum from different perspectives. Within the family sphere that leads to much arguments and sometimes clashes between the young people and the elder family members, especially the grand parents. Within the social context, the young generations” behavior in general is looked upon by disdain by the older generations. It is natural that every age has its own social codes which include the manner of dressing, of behavior, and of farming relationships with others. For example, grand mothers never approve of wearing jeans, or tight fitting skirts in Saudi Arabia in the same way that western grandmothers disapprove of the bare belly-blouses and the spiky hair of their grand daughters.

Moreover, the elder generations hold fast to tradition and old customs, which they consider as part of their cultural heritage or social values. Younger generations, however, prefer to adopt modern values, and as a result they create their own ways of behavior. In other words, the younger people behave according to the current universal manners which tend to treat the elders in a comradely way, and to nsider the old notions of respecting the elders, of being restrained and decorous in their presence as rigid and old fashioned. Further more, the younger generations always revolt against the traditional rules concerning the choice of friends, spouses, and against the close family relations where the siblings are of one heart, and where they all remain under the guidance and control of the parents. Nowadays, individuality prevails and the elders have lost their power over the younger members of the family.

It is a fact of life that the generation gap or “clash” is something that has existed and will continue to exist as long as man exists on this earth. It is not restricted to certain parts of the world, to certain times of human history or to certain cultures. That is why this “clash” is a fact of a life accepted by all generations, all over the world and through all time. Fortunately the “clashes” are not serious, and different generations continue to love and endear each other though most of the time they do not see “eye to eye.”

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