The Thirteenth generation : negotiating identity under the corporate state
Tuhey, Christine E.
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The generational group known as ?The Thirteenth Generation? was investigated in order to identify common values, goals, and aspirations of selfidentified members in the areas of their political, social, and economic beliefs. There is something qualitatively distinctive about this group that will affect the corporate state. Previous generations have shaped the United States, but the Thirteenth Generation is different because it is the first to grow up under the massive influence of communications technology in a capitalist economy. The methods of investigation included soliciting autobiographical sketches from selected 13ers. In addition to the sketches, interviews were conducted to probe for themes emerging from the autobiographies, and the reference base of the popular culture press was consulted. The purpose of this investigation was: (1) to determine the content of cultural expressions of selected Thirteenth Generation members; (2) to identify and describe the strategies they use to negotiate independence and conformity under the conditions of the corporate state; and (3) to address the implications of Thirteenth Generation perceptions for public education. Two solutions to internal conflict emerged from the study by which 13ers cope with life; the aesthetic and the material. The selected respondents attempted to manipulate their choices in life to maintain the highest degree of personal satisfaction that was consistent with their selected value system. They also placed a high value on and actively sought to create situations they thought would empower themselves to maintain a distinctive identity and independence from imposed norms.