Overview of The Dumbest Generation by Mark Bauerlein

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In “Cultural Illiteracy,” a preface to the novel The Dumbest Generation, Mark Bauerlein critically evaluates how technological distractions affect the younger generation. Bauerlein states that “digital diversions” are cutting the younger generation off from culturally enhancing mediums and is in turn making the younger generation less intelligent. Though Bauerlein is correct about the increase of peer pressure due to technology, he is mistaken about how technology is making the younger generation unintelligent. Bauerlein begins his piece by asserting that “digital diversions,” which is anything technological that distracts the younger generation from finer past times, are in fact cutting the younger generation off from culturally enhancing mediums and is in turn making the teenagers less intelligent. Bauerlein continues to claim that it is the responsibility of adults to guide the younger generation towards meaningful topics. The author adds that teenagers live life minute to minute and because of that suggests that the younger generation is not concerned with the past. Bauerlein states that because of technological advances, including cell phones teenagers are in constant contact with each other. The author states that this constant contact with peers makes it very difficult for adults in the younger generation’s life to guide them toward cultural topics. Bauerlein then adds that if the younger generation continues to indulge in “digital diversions” and is not guided by adults to finer pastimes by the time they are in college they will never take part in high culture. Bauerlein concludes that “digital diversions” and lack of adult guidance will result in a less intelligent generation. Bauerlein lacks the credibility ... ... middle of paper ... ... that I have cultivated habits of analysis and I’m a teenager with access to many forms of technological distractions. Bauerlein’s piece does in fact “open the issue to some sober skepticism.” Bauerlein informs his intended audience of the invasion of seemingly purposeless technology into the everyday lives of teenagers and its consequence: loss of intelligence. However, the author lacks credibility and attempts to convince the audience by using emotionally loaded language and making generalizations without any facts to prove said statements. These tactics devalue any ideas the author originally meant to portray and cheapens this persuasive piece. Works Cited Bauerlein, Mark. "Cultural Illiteracy." National Review Online. National Review Online, 14 May 2009. Web. 16 Feb.2014. .

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