Wednesday, April 30, 2014
Z: Zeitgeist #AtoZChallenge
If you were to define the spirit of the 21st Century, what would you say? What fashions, trends, priorities give a sense of the essence of this time in which we live?
Will our posterity look back on the early decades of the 21st Century and think of Miley Cyrus and twerking as representative of our time, much as we see the flapper girls and Zelda Sayer Fitzgerald as an icon of the 1920s?
Zeitgeist, I think, embodies more than one cultural motif. For example, the zeitgeist of education may very well be standardization. The zeitgeist of politics in the 21st Century may be stasis.
Thomas Picketty would probably argue that the 21st Century zeitgeist will be represented by a return to the Victorian economic paradigm.
In 2007 a popular YouTube video articulated a vision for today's "Lost Generation." The poem by Jonathan Reed expresses a vision that embraces a reversal in that the creator challenges the snap chat generation to reverse today's trends, to create a new paradigm of success. Certainly, we don't see many of our leaders--Elizabeth Warren is an exception--choosing a path of reversal.
Are we living in an age whose zeitgeist will be one of hopelessness? Certainly, to avoid the inevitable end, the path leading to environmental and social and political catastrophe, we should at least consider reversing course. Read Jonathan Reed's poem "Lost Generation" forward and backward.
It's not too late to end at the beginning.
*Thanks to all who joined me for my first A to Z Blogging Challenge. I'm thrilled to have met so many wonderful bloggers and to have learned so much. I'm also happy to have discovered some new authors and look forward to catching up on so much that I missed. I hope to see you here--and there--in the blogging future.