The Generation Of The United States Essay

The Generation Of The United States Essay

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Most scholars assert that the United States has five living generations, and that each is very distinct. A generation is defined as a group of people born around the same time whom exhibit similar characteristics, preferences, and values over their lifetimes. Each generation has likes, dislikes, and attributes that have been shaped by the events that occurred during their particular time period. Each generation is also influenced by the generation which has preceded them. Independently, generations have trends in politics, employment, and family structure that have impacted their lives and the social norms within the United Status. The GI/Silent Generation, Baby Boomers, Generation X, Generation Y, and lastly the Generation Z make up the five living generations in the United States. These generations span from 1901 to present day. It is important to obtain a working knowledge about the characteristics of each generations and its affect in the field of social work. Three key trends that shape generations are parenting, economics, and technology. These trends affect the way in which a social work must engage a client that belongs to a particular generational group.
Parenting theories and beliefs have changed dramatically over a course of time. In earlier years marriage was a social norm while divorce was taboo and not accepted. In addition, having children out of wedlock was shunned upon. Individuals apart of the GI and Silent generations, between 1901 and 1945, believed that children should be born from married parents and that women were to stay home and provide care for them. It wasn’t until the era of the Baby Boomers, between 1946 and 1964, that divorce was deemed appropriate if an individual decided they were unhappy. Durin...


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...and the similarities between generations within the United States when providing services to individuals. Working effectively in a multi-generational society takes sensitivity to the difference which impacts an individual’s acceptance of the services that can be provided by a social worker. Social workers must be leery of stereotypes associated with a particular generational group. Each individual that is a part of a particular generation can not automatically be categorized as having all of the characteristics of that particular generation. For example, there may be some Generation X parents, women in particular, that believes in engaging in hands on parenting and forgoes working outside of the home. Social workers do not have to agree with the values of different generations, nevertheless they should strive to understand the mind-sets of different generations.

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