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Marlboro Target Exploration: Understanding Generation X

Date: Aug 1992
Length: 22 pages
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Author
Cates, G.
Cohn, J.S.
Cray, D.
Crispell, D.
Curry, T.
Fost, D.
Gross, D.M.
Himmelfarb, S.
Mcwhirter, W.
Scott, S.
Townsend, B.
Area
PLAIA-FAWCETT,GINA/OFFICE
Type
BRRE, BRAND REVIEW
CHAR, CHART, GRAPH, TABLE, MAPS
MAGA, MAGAZINE ARTICLE
NELE, NEWSLETTER
PHOT, PHOTOGRAPH
PUBL, PUBLICATION, OTHER
Attachment
2041855554/2041856014
Request
Stmn/R3-014
Named Organization
Advertising Age
Aids Coalition to Unleash Power
American Demographics
American Demographics Magazine
Animal Rights Group
Armed Services
Art Inst of Chicago
Atlanta Falcons
Baby Bust Group
Bass
Beatles
Black Flag
Black Star
Blue Oyster Cult
Body Count
Boomer Group
Breakin
Brown Univ
Ca State Bar
Cbs News
Chicago White Sox
Cinemax
Cnn
Coca Cola
College Track
Consumer Group
Cosmopolitan
Crenshaw High
Cv
Dc Comics
Dirt
Discovery
Elle
Espn
Football Team
Foote Cone
Full House
Full Time Dads
Gap
Glamour
Godiva
Gq Magazine
Group of Consumers
Group of Law Enforcement Officials
Group of Tibetan Nuns
Harvard
Hbo
Hershey
Higher Education Research Inst
Home Team
Hometown Team
Houston Police Officers Assn
Ibm
J Crew
Judas Priest
Kiwi Brands
Knbr
Leo, Leo Burnett Agency
Lifetime Learning Systems
Lollapalooza
Long Communications
Looters
Los Angeles Raiders
Lucchese
Mademoiselle
Major League Baseball
Maritz Marketing Research
Matrix
Mediamark
Modern Maturity
Motel 6
Mtv
Natl Basketball Assn
Natl Football League
Natl Park Service
New Bohemians
New Jack City
Newsweek
Nick at Nite
Nike
Northwestern Univ
Nwa
Ok State Univ
Parenting Magazine
Parents Magazine
Parents Music Resource Center
Peace Corps
People Weekly
Playboy Magazine
Popular Mechanics
Princeton
Radical Action Group
Rap Group
Readers Digest
Red Lobster Inn
Rhyme Syndicate
Rights of the Accused
Rolling Stone
Rolling Stones
Roper, Roper Org
San Francisco 49ers
Sassy
Senate
Showtime
Sipa
Sire
Slayer
Soul II Soul
Sports Illustrated
St Louis Browns
Street Gang
Sygma
Tbs
Team of Industrial Security Experts
Teen
Teenage Research Unlimited
Thirtysomething
Time
Time Warner
Transspecies Unlimited
Tv Guide
Ucla
Univ of Akron Oh
Univ of Denver
Univ of Il
Univ of Md
Univ of Mi
Univ of Pa
Universal
US Army
US Census Bureau
Vh1
Vogue
Who, World Health Org
Wonder Years
Working Mother
Yale
Yankelovich Clancy
Young Rubicam
Yves St Laurent
10000 Maniacs
17
18 to 29 Year Old Group
2 Live Crew
20 to 24 Age Group
3 Men + A Baby
Act Up
Document File
2041855555/2041856014/Marlboro Target Exploration: Understanding Generation X 921100
Named Person
Abrams, J.
Aceto, R.
Astin, A.
Ball, V.
Banks, K.
Barbieri, R.
Biden, J.
Boorstein, L.
Brack, D.
Brewer, W.
Brickell, E.
Brock, M.
Bruno, R.
Bush, G.
C, E.
Caddell, P.
Carter, J.
Chinn, C.
Clinton, M.
Clinton, W.
Costello, S.
Davidson, K.
Dickmann, J.
Donnelly, S.B.
Dylan
Elder, D.
Ellis, B.E.
Erikson, P.
Evangelista, A.
Ford, G.
Fox, D.
Frost, R.
Geoghegan, K.
Gorbachev, M.
Gore, A.
Gore, T.
Hart, G.
Hatch, D.
Henderson, S.
Hendrix
Higgins, R.
Hinojosa, J.
Hirsch, P.
Ice, T.
Jackson, J.
Janowitz, T.
Jones, Q.
Kennedy, J.
Kennedy, J.F.
Kim, Y.S.
King, M.L.
King, R.
Krist, R.
Lahl, L.
Lay, D.
Leary, T.
Leen, S.
Ludwig, D.
Mackie, J.
Marrow, T.
Mccord, A.
Mcinerney, J.
Mcnally, S.
Mcqueen, J.
Miller, T.
Neubauer, J.
Nixon, R.
Oconnell, M.
Ortiz, D.
Orzame, G.
Perot, R.
Persson, J.
Persson, S.
Peters, J.
Reagan, R.
Riche, M.F.
Robbins, T.
Robinson, D.
Rooney, J.
Roosevelt, F.
Rothman, G.
Rubik
Salzman, M.
Schaumberg, D.
Schlesinger, A.
Seguine, H.
Sikes
Smith, P.
Stafford, C.
Stansfield, L.
Stevens, C.
Stevens, R.
Thai, T.
Trump, D.
Vanderjack, D.
Wilson, C.
Winke, R.
Wiseman, P.
Xxarsenio
Xxicecube
Xxmadonna
Author (Organization)
American Demographics
American Prospect
Marketing Research
Newsweek
Numbers News
Roper, Roper Org
Time
Master ID
2041855556/6013

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Page 11: bxr02a00
isolated, in both a physical and psycho- logical sense, as full-time parents. Their stories about the joys and frustrations of child-rearing are not new to women, but they are new to many men. Men who are full-time homemakers are still rare. But for whatever reason, men are taking on more of the everyday re- sponsibilities of running a household. That includes shopping, child care, and cooking. FORCED TO CHANGE Men act as consumers in two ways-as in- dividuals and as members of a household. These two levels of purchase behavior can become intertwined. For example, only 46 percent of men buy all of their own per- sonal items, according to a survey con- ducted for American Demographics by Maritz Marketing Research. Thirty-five percent of men buy half or most of their own things, and 18 percent buy just some or none. In contrast, 82 percent of women, control all of their personal purchases, and 10 percent buy most of their own goods. Men shop almost as frequently as American Demographics / January 1992 39
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ing markets for clothing, jewelry, and other romantic items. Looking good is important to many men, and romance is only part of the rea- son. Nearly half of men strongly agree that they owe it to themselves to look their best, according to GQ, and 39 percent say they have a strong sense of personal style. One out of four men feels that dressing for success is a necessity for his job, and nearly half are pleased when others notice and comment on their appearance. The GQ survey found a significant in- crease in the amount of time men spend grooming themselves. Men spent an aver- age of 44 minutes a day grooming in 1990, up from 30 minutes in 1988. Men under the age of 25 spent the most time (53 min- utes a day, on average) arranging their hair and clothes, and otherwise working on their outward appearance. WHAT CHANGES AND WHAT DOESN'T Men are changing the ways they shop, work at home, and dress. But one male mindset cuts across all demographic and socioeconomic boundaries, and it has not changed. It is a thirst for knowledge. "Must-Knov" men are do-it-yourselfers whose interest in how things work extends to their understanding of the products they buy, according to a survey sponsored by Popular Mechanics and conducted by Yankelovich Clancy Shulman. They are one-fourth of men with household incomes of $20,000 or more. Must-Know men are a key consumer group because they influence the buying behavior of people around them. These men know and give advice about automo- biles, home repair projects, and other traditionally male domains. They also dominate high-tech items like video equip- ment. In general, men's tastes in media follow the same desire to search for and acquire factual knowledge. Men spend more time than women reading newspapers and less time reading books and magazines, ac- cording to the Americans' Use of Time survey of the University of Maryland. The ost men are easy-going on matters of style and fashion. But the Son Francisco 49ers learned the hard way that men are passionate about their team's logo. When the football team introduced a new symbol for its hel- mets last February, fan reaction was swift, brutal, and negative. The Niners reversed themselves within a week. 'You're not just talking about it as apparel," says Ralph Barbieri, host of a sports talk show on San Francisco's KNBR radio station. "You're changing the uniform of these people's team." Many men see a team's logo as an important part of their own identity. "Sport is the glue that bonds many Americans to their place," says John Rooney, a geography professor at Oklahoma books men prefer tend toward nonfiction. The novels men like are action-oriented tales, science fiction, and westerns. Men are more likely than women to watch adventure or science fiction pro- grams on television. They are also more likely to watch all kinds of sports, accord- ing to Mediamark's spring 1991 survey. But both sexes are equally interested in news programs, documentaries, enter- tainment specials, and mystery/police shows. Men are less likely than women to watch award shows and pageants, day- time dramas, feature films, game shows, prime-time dramas, and situation comedies. The magazines men like show a similar skew. Four of the ten magazines most read by men are also on the top ten for women, according to Mediamark. These are Modenz Maturity, People, Reader's Digest, and TV Guide. The rest of men's favorite magazines are mostly sports and news-related, while women turn to maga- zines that focus on home and family. There are comparatively few general men's or boys' magazines on the market. Only one-Playboy-is among men's ten most-read magazines. "One of the prob- lems confronting marketers is that there Men spent an average of 44 minutes a day gtooming in 1990, up from 30 nunutes in 1988. simply is no Seventeen or Teen for boys," says Peter Zollo, president of Teenage Re- search Unlimited in Northbrook, Illinois. 42 American Demographics / January 1992 ~
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4 4 BLRCK IS OEFfHTELY IN, IT'S IN VOGUE TO BE BAO.)9 State University. 'This is more true of men, because they have participated in sports since they were children." Wearing the home team's colors "is another way of saying, 'This place is important to me, and I'll demonstrate it with this jacket.'" This urge to boast has spawned a big business. Major League Baseball products reaped $1.5 billion in sales from more than 3,000 logo products in 1990. National Football League products grossed $1 billion, and National Basketball Association products topped $750 million in sales this year. Buying a logo can be a fan's way of voting for the franchise. Barbieri says that many 49ers fans were particularly angry that the team wanted to take "SF" off its helmets. 'People were as insecure and paranoid as they could be" at the thought the 49ers might be preparing for a move, he says. But even if the unimaginable happens and the hometown team leaves, the memories of fans still leave behind a profitable mar- ket. Major League Baseball's Cooperstown Collection sells reproductions of caps and other equipment from defunct teams like the St. Louis Browns. This product line reaped over $200 million in 1990. Fashion-conscious people are now wearing athletic-oriented apparel, even if they don't care about sports. The Chicago White Sox adopted snazzy new black uni- forms last year, which quickly rose to the top of major league sales. "Black is defi- nitely in," Barbieri says, referring to the Atlanta Falcons' uniform switch from red to black. "It's in vogue to be bad." Logos do indeed convey an image. Some street gangs have adopted black and silver as their'own colors, in homage to the Los Angeles Raiders' "bad .)y" reputation. As an anti-gong measure, a Florida shopping mall recently banned the wearing of Raiders jackets. The ban was quickly rescinded after an outburst of protest from Raiders fans. If a shopping mall outlawed Yves St. Laurent, would anybody care? -Dan Fodt That may be why Long Communications (creators of Sassy) recently launched Dirt, the first lifestyle magazine for teen boys. The best way to reach men with adver- tising may be to focus on role- or subject- oriented media, rather than on media geared specifically to either sex. Par- enting and Parents' magazines try to en- compass both mothers and fathers, for ex- ample, because men and women are equally likely to be parents. Men make up only one-fifth of both magazines' readers, according to Mediamark. That share is likely to rise, however. A new generation of active fathers has arrived. When GQ asked baby boomers what significant event had happened to them in the past year, 4 percent said they had be- come a father for the first time. Men and women both value their family more highly than anything else. This orientation grows stronger with age, and it catches fire when babies arrive. The true nature of fatherhood can be a revelation to men. When Gordon Rothman of CBS News testified about paternity leave at a Congressional hearing, he ech- oed a truth that women have known about for a long time: "I don't know why people talk about a wimp factor. This is the hard- est work I've ever done in my life." The huge baby-boom generation has al- ways been responsible for the greatest changes in men's consumer behavior. To- day, baby-boom men are increasing the time they spend on household and child- care duties. As a result, they are becoming more savvy about household products. Meanwhile, more and more women are learning how to buy cars, program VCRs, and use power tools. But some bastions of masculinity remain. Eighty-five percent of beer drinkers are men, for example. And men can pick up women' unique behaviors too. A study conducted for Kiwi Brands finds that 40 percent of professional men sometimes wear sneakers back and forth to work. It's a brave new world. • T A K I N G I T F U R T H E R For information about GQ's "American Male Opinion Index," contact Michael Clinton at (212) 880-8800. More on shopping behavior is available by calling Phil Wiseman of Maritz Marketing Research, Inc., at (314) 827-1949. Fu11•Time Dads is published by Chris Stafford at P.O. Box 120773, St. Paul, MN 55122- 0773; telephone (612) 633-7424. Reprints of this article may be purchased by calling (800) 828-1133. American Demographics / January 1992 43
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N O j The twen tysomething generation is balking at work, marriage and baby- ~ ~ boomer values. Why are today's young adults so skeptical? ~ ~ ~ 56 TIME.JULY 16.1990 4:~
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Sonja Henderson, 23, atudies painting and sculpture at the Art Institute of Chicago "I think we're really confused because we get mixed messages in the media. We have sex and violence on TV, and yet they don't want to air a condom ad." By DAVID M. GROSS and SOPHFRONIA SCOTT hey have trouble making deci- sions. They would rather hike in the Himalayas than climb a cor- porate ladder. They have few heroes, no anthems, no style to call their own. They crave entertainment, but their attention span is as short as one zap of a TV dial. They hate yuppies, hip- pies and druggies. They postpone marriage because they dread divorce. They sneer at Range Rovers, Rolexes and red suspend- ers. What they hold dear are family life, lo- cal activism, national parks, penny loafers and mountain bikes. They possess only a hazy sense of their own identity but a mon- umental preoccupation with all the prob- lems the preceding generation will leave for them to fix. This is the twentysomething genera- tion, those 48 million young Americans ages 18 through 29 who fall between the famous baby boomers and the boomlet of children the baby boomers are producing. Since today's young adults were born dur- ing a period when the U.S. birthrate de- creased to half the level of its postwar peak, in the wake of the great baby boom, they are sometimes called the baby busters. By whatever name, so far they are an un- sung generation, hardly recognized as a so- cial force or even noticed much at all. "I envision ourselves as a lurking generation, waiting in the shadows, quietly figuring out our plan," says Rebecca Winke, 19, of Madison, Wis. "Maybe that's why nobody notices us." But here they come: freshly minted grownups. And anyone who expected they would echo the boomers who came before, bringing more of the same attitude, should brace for a surprise. This crowd is pro- foundly different from-even contrary to-the group that came of age in the 1960s and that celebrates itself each week on The Wonder Years and thirtysomething. By and large, the 18-to-29 group scornfully rejects the habits and values of the baby boomers, viewing that group as self-cen- tered, fickle and impractical. While the baby boomers had a placid childhood in the 1950s, which helped in- spire them to start their revolution, today's twentysomething generation grew up in a time of drugs, divorce and economic strain. ' They virtually reared themselves. TV pro- vided the surrogate parenting, and Ronald Reagan starred as the real-life Mister Rog- ers, dispensing reassurance during their troubled adolescence. Reagan's message: problems can be shelved until later. A prime characteristic of today's young adults is their desire to avoid risk, pain and rapid change. They feel paralyzed by the social problems they see as their inheri- tance: racial strife, homelessness. AIDS, fractured families and federal deficits. "It is almost our role to be passive," says Peter Smith. 23, a newspaper reporter in Ventu- ra, Calif. "College was a time of mass apa- thy, with pockets of change. Many global events seem out of our control." The twentysomething generation has been neglected because it exists in the shadow of the baby boomers, usually de- fined as the 72 million Americans born be- tween 1946 and 1964. Members of the tail end of the boom generation, now ages 26 through 29, often feel alienated from the larger group, like kid brothers and sisters who disdain the paths their siblings chose. The boomer group is so huge that it tends to define every era it passes through. forc- ing society to accommodate its moods and dimensions. Even relatively small bunches of boomers made waves, most notably the 4 million or so young urban professionals of the mid-1980s. By contrast, when to- day's 18-to-29-year-old group was bom, the baby boom was fading into the so- called baby bust, with its precipitous de- cline in the U.S. birthrate. The relatively small baby-bust group is poorly under- stood by everyone from scholars to mar- • TIME, JULY 16, 1990 keters. But as the twentysomething adults begin their prime working years. they have suddenly become far more intriguing. Rea- son: America needs them. Todav s voune adults are so scarce that their numbers could result in severe labor shortages in the coming decade. Twentysomething adults feel the op- posing tugs of making money and doing good works. but they refuse to get caught up in the passion of either one. They reject 70-hour workweeks as yuppie lunacy. just as they shirk from starting another social revolution. Today's young adults want to stay in their own backyard and do their work in modest ways. "We're not trvin, to change things. We're trying to fix thin_s." says Anne McCord. 21. of Portland. Ore. "We are the generation that is goin,, to renovate America. We are going to be its carpenters and janitors." This is a back-to-basics bunch that wishes life could be simpler. "We expect less, we want less, but we want less to he better," says Devin Schaumburg. 20, of Knoxville, "If we're just trying to pick up the pieces, put it all back toQether, is there a label for that?" That's a laudable notion, but don't hold your breath till they find their answer. "They are finally out there, saying `Pay attention to us.' but I've never heard them think of a single thing that defines them," says Martha Farnsworth Riche, national edi- John Neubauer, 27, teaches French and Latin to Inner-city children in Baltimore "For our gener ation, teaching is the Peace Corps of the 1990s." 57 cn
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Dorin Vanderjaek, 20, of Redding, Calif., joined the U.S. Army to get an education "I really don't think our generation takes life seriously enough." tor of American Demographics magazine. What worries parents. teachers and employers is that the latest crop of adults wants to postpone growing up. At a time when thev should be graduating. entering the work force and startina families of their own. the twentvsomething crowd is balking at those rites of passage. A prime reason is their recognition that the American Dream is much tougher to achieve after yoars of housing-price inflation and stag- nant waees. Householders under the age of 25 were the only group during the 1980s to sufler a drop in income. a decline of 10r"c. One result: fullv 7>r( of vouna males 18 to 24 years old are still living at home. the largest proportion since the Great Depression. In a TtM;=1cnN poll of 18- to 29-year- olds. 661'r of those surveved aereed it will he harder for their group to live as com- fortablv as previous generations. While the majority of today's young adults think they have a strone chance of finding a well-pay- ing and interesting job, 69~'c believe they will have more difficulty• buying a house. and 52rc say theywill have less leisure time than their predecessors. Asked to describe their generation. 53rc said the group is worried about the future. Until the~ come out of their shells. the twentysomething!baby-bust generation will be a frustrating enigma. Riche calls them the New Petulants because ••thev can often end up sounding like w'hiners." Their anxious indecision creates a kind of omi- nous fog around them. Yet those who take a more sanguine view see in today's young adults a sophistication, tolerance and candor that could help repair the excesses of rampant individualism. Here is a guide for understanding the puzzling twenty- something crowd: FAMILY: THE TIES DIDN'T BIND "Ronald Reagan was around longer than some of my friends' fathers." says Rachel Stevens, 21. a graduate of the University of Michigan. An estimated 40cl'c of people in their 20s are children of divorce. Even more were latchkey kids, the first to experi- ence the downside of the two-income fam- ily. This may explain why the only solid commitment they are willing to make is to their own children-someday. The group wants to spend more time with their kids. not because they think they can handle the balance of work and child rearing anv bet- ter than their parents but because they see themselves as having been neglected. "Mv generation will be the family generation," savs Mara Brock, 20, of Kansas City. "I don't want my kids to go through what my parents put me through." David Robinson, 25, a Princeton graduate, protests with the AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power, known as Acr UP "What we do is about power. Becoming a threat. Legislators don't do things because of kindness. They react to pressure." 5S TIME.JULY 16.1990 That ordeal was loneliness. "This generation came from a culture that really didn't prize having kids anyway." says Chica- go sociologist Paul Hirsch. "Their parents just wanted to go and play out their roles-they assumed the kids were going to grow up all right." Absent par- ents forced a dependence on secondary relationships with teachers and friends. Flashy toys and new clothes were supposed to make up for this lack but in- stead sowed the seeds for a later abhorrence of the yuppie brand of materialism. "QualitY time" didn't cut it for them either. In a survey to gauge the baby bust- ers' mood and tastes. Chicago's Leo Burnett ad asencv discov- ered that the group had a sur- prising amount of anger and re- sentment about their absentee parents. "The flashback was in- stantaneous and so hot vou could feel it," recalls Josh McQueen, Bur- nett's research director. "Thev were telling us passionately that quality time was exact- Iv what was not in their lives." At this point, members of the twentv- something generation just want to avoid perpetuating the mistakes of their own up- bringing. Today's potential parents look beyond their own mothers and fathers when searching for child-rearing role mod- els. Says Kip Banks. 24, a graduate student in public policy at the University of Michi- gan: "When I raise my children, my ap- proach will be my grandparents'. much more serious and conservative. I would never give my children the freedoms I had." N O ~ co CJi Cn ~ ~ ~ L I , , I I I I
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MARRIAGE: WHAT'S THE RUSH? The generation is afraid of relationships in gener- al, and thev are the ultimate skeptics when it comes to mar- riage. Some young adults main- tain they will wait to get mar- ried. in the hope that time will bring a more compatible mate and the maturitv to avoid a di- vorce. But few of them have arrv real blueprint for how a success- ful relationship should function. "We never saw commitment at work." says Robert Higgins, 26. a graduate student in music at Ohio's University of Akron. As a result, twentysomething people are staying single longer and often living together before marrying. Studying the 20-to-24 age group in 1988, the U.S. Cen- sus Bureau found that 77CC of men and 619'r of women had never married, up sharply from 551%r and 369c, respectively. in 1970. Among those 25 to 29, the unmar- rieds included 43cl"'c of men and 29% of women in 1988, vs. 19ic and 101i'c in 1970. The sheer disposability of marriage breeds skepticism. Kasey Geoghegan, 20, a stu- dent at the University of Denver and a child.of divorced parents, believes nuptial vows have lost their credibility. Says she: "When people get married, ideally it's per- manent. but once problems set in, they don't bother to work things out." DATING: DON'T STAND SO CLOSE' Findine a date on a Saturday night, let alone a mate, is a challenge for a genera- tion that has elevated casual commitment to an art form. Despite their nostalsia for family values, few in their 20s are eager to revive a 1950s mentality about pairing off. Rick Bruno. 22. who will enter Yale Medical School in the fall. would rather think of himself as a free agent. Says he: "Not getting hurt is a big priority with me." Others are concerned that the generation is too de- tached to form caring re- lationships. "People are afraid to like each other." says Leslie Boorstein. 21, a photographer from Great Neck. N.Y. For those who try to make meaningful connec- tions-often through vid- campuses do remnants of libertinism lin- ger. That worries public-health officials, who are witnessing an explosion of sexually transmitted diseases, particularly genital warts. "There is a high degree of students who believe oral contraception protects them from the AIDS virus. It doesn't," says Wally Brewer, coordinator of a study of HIV infection on U.S. campuses. "Obvious- ly it's a big educational challenge." CAREERS: NOT JUST YET, THANKS Because they are fewer in number, today's young adults have the power to wreak hav- oc in the workplace. Companies are dis- covering that to win the best talent. they must cater to a young work force that is consid- ered overly sensitive at best and lazy at worst. During the next several years, employers will have to double their recruitina efforts. According to American Demographics, the pool of entry-level workers 16 to 24 will shrink about 500.000 a year through 1995, to 21 million. These youngsters are starting to use their bargaining power to get more of what thev feel is coming to them. They want flexibilitv. access to decision making and a re- turn to the sacredness of work-free weekends. "I Philosuphies on Gfe There is no point in staying in a job unless you are completely satisfied. Agree 58% Disagree 40% Given the way things are, it will be much harder for peopie in my generation to live as comfortabty as previous generations. Agree 65% Disagree 33% eo dating services. party lines and person- als ads-the risks of modern love are greater than ever. AIDS casts a pall over a generation that fully expected to reap the benefits of the sexual revolution. Respon- sibilitv is the watchword. Only on college Grom a tHephone poli of 602 18-to-29-year-ob Amerrans tastn io, TIMEiCHh on lune t3-I7 or Yankebvicn Gancv ShWrnar $3mpnnj eROr DIlIS D, fnlnUt 6`; youngest candidates ever to be admitted to the State Bar of California. "I don't Susan Costello, 23, of Manchester, Mass., trekked to Dharmsala, India, where she teaches English to a group of Tibetan nuns "I felt that if I didn't do something a bit risky, I would be in a pathetically conservative, unadventurous state in 20 years." want to go to work and feel I'll be burned out two or three years down the road." Most of all, young people want con- stant feedback from supervisors. In con- ' trast with the baby boomers. who dis- dained evaluations as somehow undemo- cratic, people in their 20s crave grades, performance evaluations and reviews. They want a quantification of their I achievement. After all, these were the chil- dren dren who prepped diligently for college- j aptitude exams and learned how to master I Rubik's Cube and Space Invaders. The\ are consummate game players and grade grubbers. "Unlike yuppies. younger people I are not driven from within, they need re- inforcement." says Penny Erikson. 40. a se- ~ nior vice president at the Young & Rubi- i cam ad agency. which has hired mam ~ recent college eraduates. "Ther prefer i short-term taskswith ohser.able results." Money is still important as an indicator of career performance. but crass material- I ism is on the wane. Marian Salzman. 31. an editor at large for the collegiate magazine CV believes the shift away from the big- salary, big-city role model of the early '80s is an accommodation to the reality of a de- pressed Wall Street and slack economy. 59 4 • want a work environment concerned about my per- 41 sonal growth." says Jenni- _~ fer Peters. 22, one of the
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Living Many boomers expected to have made mil- lions bv the time thev reached 30. "But for todav's graduates, the easy roads to fast money have dried up." says Salzman. Climbins the corporate ladder is tricki- er than ever at a time of widespread corpo- rate restructuring. When recruiters talk about long-term job securitv, young adults know better. Savs Victoria Ball, 41, direc- tor of Career Planning Services at Brown Universitv: "Even IBM, which always said it would never lay off-well, now they're doing iS too." Between 1987 and the end of this vear, Big Blue will have shed about 23.000 workers through voluntary incen- tive programs. Sisters Joede, 24, and Sharyce Persson, 26, of Uttle Silver, N.J., opened a dance studio of their own in 1988 "I've had all types of bosses, and you get tired of being treated poorly. You're busting your chops for someone else. "-Sharyce Most of all. vounQ workers want job eratification. Teachinc. long disdained as an underpaid and underappreciated pro- fession. is a hot prospect. Enrollment in U.S. teaching programs increased 61 c"c from 1985 to 1989. And more graduates are expressing interest in public-service ca- reers. "The glory days of Wall Street repre- sented an extreme." says Janet Abrams. 29. a Senate aide who regularly interviews young people looking for jobs on Capitol Hill. "Now I'm hearing about kids going to the National Park Service." Welcome to the era of hedged bets and lowered expectations. Young people increasingly claim they are willing to leave ca- reers in middle gear, without making that final climb to the top. The leitmotiv of the new age: second place seems just fine. But young adults are flighty if they find their work- place harsh or inflexible. "The difference between now and then was that we had a higher threshold for unhappiness," says editor Salzman. "I always expected that a job would be 80~'c misery and 20 7c glory, but this generation refuses to pay its dues." EDUCATION: NO DEGREE, NO DOLLARS Smart 3ud savvy, the twenty- something group isM'ebest-educated gen- eration in U.S. historv. A record 59cic of 1988 high school graduates enrolled in col- lege. compared with 491/-c in the previous decade. The lesson thev have taken to heart: education is a means to an end. the ticket to a cherished middle-class life-style. "The saddest thing of all is that they don't have the quest to understand things. to un- derstand themselves," savs Alexander As- tin, whose UCLA-based Higher Education Research Institute has been measuring changing attitudes among college fresh- man for 24 years. Yet. a fact of life in the 1990s economy is that a college degree is mostly about survival. A person un- der 30 with a colleLe degree will earn four times as much money as someone without it. In 1973 the difference was only twice as great. With the loss of well- paying factorv jobs. there are fewer chances for less-educated young people to reach the middle class. Many dropouts quickly learn this and decide to re- turn to school. But that deci- sion costs money and sends many twentysomethings back to the nest. Others are flock- ing to the armed services. Private First Class Dorin Vanderjack. 20. of Redding. Calif.. left his catering job at a Holiday Inn to join the Army. After two years of racking up credits at the local com- munity college, he was ready for a four- vear school and found the Armv's offer of 822.800 in tuition assistance too tempting to turn down. "There's no possible way I could save that." he savs. "This forced me to grow up." WANDERLUST: LET'S GET LOST While the re- cruiters are trying to woo young workers.. a generation is out planning its escape from the 9-to-5 routine. Trav- el is alwavs an easv wav out. one that comes cloaked in a mantle of respectability: cul- tural enrichment. In the TIME/CNN poll. 60~1c of the people surveyed said they plan to travel a lot while they are young. And it's not just rich students who are doing it. "Travel is an obsession for ev- eryone." says Cheryl Wilson, 21, a University of Pennsylva- nia graduate who has visited Denmark and Hungary. "The idea of going away. being mobile, is very romantic. It ful- fills our sense of adventure." Unlike previous generations of up- per-crust Americans who savored a postgraduate European tour as the ultimate finishing school. today's adventurers are picking places far more exotic. They are seeking an escape from Western culture, rather than further re- finement to smooth their entry into soci- ety. Katmandu. Dar es Salaam. Bana- kok: these are the trendy destinations of many young daydreamers. Susan Costel- lo. 23, a recent Harvard graduate. voy- aged to Dharmsala. India, to spend time at the headquarters of the Tibetan gov- ernment-in-exile, headed by the Dalai ['-A The easygoing frfe-style The music - - The experimentation with dtugs. so 70% 28% 2% 17% 79% 4% 60
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Lama. Costello decided to ex- plore Tibetan culture "to see if they really had something in their way of life that we seem to be missing in the West." ACTIVISM: ART OF THE POSSIBLE People in their 20s want to give something back to society, but they don't know how to begin. The really important problems, ranging from the national debt to home- lessness, are too large and complex to com- prehend. And always the great, intimidat- Yong Sin Kim, 19, a music majorat the University of Denver, is studying for an M.B.A. at the same time "It's not that we don't consider feminism important; it's just that we don't see the inequality as much right now.'. ing shadow of 1960s-stvle activism hovers in the backaround. Twentysomething youths suspect that toda}'s attempts at po- litical and social action pale in comparison with the excitement of draft dodging or freedom ridine. The new generation pines for a roman- ticized past when the issues were clear and the troops were committed. "The kids of the 1960s had it easv." claims Gavin Or- zame. 18. of Berrien Springs. Mich. "Back then they had a war and the civil rights movement. Now there are so many issues that it's hard to get one big rallying point." But because the '60s utopia never came, today's young adults view the era with a combination of reverie and revulsion. "What was so great about growing up then anyway?" says future physician Bruno. "The generation that had Vietnam and Watergate is going to be known for leaving us all their problems. They came out of Camelot and blew it." Such views are revisionist, since the '60s were not easy. and the revolution did not end in utter failure. The twenty- something generation takes for granted many of the real goals of the '60s: civil rights, the antiwar movement, feminism and gay liberation. But those movements never coalesced into a unified crusade. which is something the twentysomethings hope will come along, break their lethar- gy and goad them into action. One major cause is the planet; 4317c of the young adults in the TImE/cNh poll said they are "environmentally conscious." At the same time. some young people are joining the ranks of radical-action groups. includ- ing ACT UP. the AIDS Coalition to Un- leash Power. and Trans-Species Unlimit- ed, the animal-rights eroup. These organizations have appeal because they focus their message, choose specific tar- gets and use high-stakes pressure tactics like civil disobedience to get things ac- complished quickly. For a generation that has witnessed so much failure in the political system, such results-oriented activism seems much more valid and practi- cal. Savs Sean McNally. 20. who headed the VYMo has Earth Dav activi- K befter In these areas? ties at Northwestern Universitv: "A lot of us are afraid to take an intense stance and then leave it all behind like our parents did. We have to protect ourselves from burning out, from losing faith." Like McNally, the rest of the generation is doing what it can. Its members prefer activities that are small in scope: cleaning up a park over a week- end or teaching literacy to underprivileged children. LEADERS: HEROES ARE HARD TO FIND Young adults need role models and leaders. but the twentysomething genera- tion has almost no one to look up to. While 58~"c of those in the Ttn-tE/CivN survey said their group has heroes. they failed to agree on anv. Ronald Reaean was most often named. with on}v 89c of the vote. followed by Mikhail Gorbachev (7ci'c), Jesse Jackson (69c) and George Bush (5~'e). Today's young generation finds no fig- ures in the present who com- pare with such '60s-era heroes as John F. Kennedy and Mar- tin Luther King. "It seems there were all these great peo- ple in the '60s." says Kasi Da- vidson, 18, of Cody, Wyo. "Now there is nobodv." Today's potential leaders seem unable to maintain their stature. They have a wav of ei- ther self-destructing or being decimated in the press, which trumpets their faults and foi- bles. "The media don't really give young people role mod- els anymore." says Christina Chinn. 21, of Denver. `'Now you get role models like Donald Trump and all of the moneymakers-no one with real ideals." SHOPPING: LESS PASSION FOR PRESTIGE Marketers are confounded as they try to reach a generation so rootless and noncommittal. But ad agencies that have ex- plored the values of the twentysomething generation have found that status symbols. from Cuisinarts to BMWs. actually carn, a social stigma among mam young adults. Their emphasis, according to Dan Fox. mar- ketina planner at Foote. Cone & Belding, will be on affordable quality. Unlike baby boomers. who buv 50~"c of their cars from Japanese makers. the twentysome- thine generation is too young to remember De- Young Young adults adults m the today '60s and 70s troit's clunkers of the 1970s. To- Getting a high-paying job 77% 18% Getting an interesting job 72% 19% Living in an exci6ng time SO% 40% #~aving sexual freedom 50% 42% ~ving enough leisdre ~ne .,.'3;%;,~ 52% .-~g~ t ".~''~ 61 . .. . ... . .. .. . . - .... f ~ . - . _ . . .:'Li=
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Living wr..,.. we<e p..I s.r. *W Aa yen alli..d.one ti.e isW. day's young adult is likely to aspire to a Jeep Cherokee or Chevy Lumina with lots of cup holders. "Don't knock the cup hold- ers." warns Fox. "There's some- thing about them that says. 'It's all right in my world.' That's not a small notion. And Mercedes doesn't have them." The twentysomething attitude toward consumption in general: get more for less. While yuppies spent money to acquire the best and the rarest toys. young adults believe they can live just as well. and maybe even better, without breaking the bank. They disdain de- signer anything. "Just point me to the generic aisle," says Jill Mackie. 21. a journalism major at the University of Il- linois. Such a no-nonsense outlook has made hay for stores like the Gap, which thrives on young people's de- sire for casual clothinta at a casual price. Similarly, a tw'entvsomething adult picks a Hershe `~, bar over Godiva chocolates, and Bass Wee- juns (price: S75) instead of Lucchese cowboy boots ( S>00 ). CULTURE: FEW FLAVORS OF THEIR OWN Down deep. what frustrates to- day's young people-and those who ob- serve them-is their failure to create an oricinal vouth culture. The 1920s had jazz and the Lost Generation. the 1950s created the Beats. the 1960s bbrought ev- ervthing embodied in the Summer of Love. But the twentysomething genera- tion has yet to make a substantial cultur- al statement. People in their 20s have been handed down everyone else's mu- sic. clothes and styles. leaving little room for their own imaginations. Mini- revivals in platform shoes. ripped jeans and urban-cowbov chic all co- incide with J. Crew prep. Gumhv haircuts and teased-out suburban perms. What young adults have manaeed to come up with is either nuevo hipster or ultra- nerd, hut almost always a bland imitation of the past. "They don't even seem to know how to dress." says sociologist Hirsch. "and thev're al- 62 most unschooled in how to look in dif- ferent•settings." Many critics dismiss the new genera- tion as culture vultures. But there is anoth- er way of looking at them: as open-minded samplers of an increasingly diverse cultural buffet. Rap music has fueled a fresh array of clothing styles and political attitudes. not to mention musical innovations. A new, hot radio format has evolved to pro- vide exposure for such urban dance-music acts as Soul II Soul and Lisa Stansfield. On television. MTV has grown from an exclu- sively rock-'n'-roll outlet to one that en- compasses pop, soul, reggae and even dis- co. Like Madonna in her hit song Vog{e. this generation knows how to "strike a pose." Eclecticism is supreme, as long as the show is authentic-as camp. art or theater. The music of the '60s and '70s is still viewed. sometimes resentfully. as classic. So today's artists are busv tryine to gain ac- ceptance by reworking the past. Edic Brickell and the New Bohemians redo Dv- lan: 10.000 Maniacs covers Cat Stevens. Why hasn't the twentvsomethine genera- tion picked up the creative gauntlet? One reason is that the generation believes the artistic climate that existed when the Beatles and the Who were writing is no lonaer viable. Art. they feel. is not created for the sake of a statement these davs. It's written for money. Even many of the fiction writers who emerged in the late 1980s-Bret Easton Ellis. Tama Janowitz. Ja\ McIn- erney. to name the usual suspects-seemed to be in it for the money and fame. TIME.JUL1' 16. 199u That makes today's young adults pessimis- tic that originals like Tom Robbins or Timothv Leary or the Rolling Stones will come along in their time. But then even the Stones are not really the Stones these days. "Kids aren't stupid." says Mike O'Connell. 23, of Chicago, lead singer of his own band. Rights of the Accused. "The Stones aren't playing rock 'n' roll anymore. They're play- ing for Budweiser." Maybe the twentysomething generation does have trouble making a decision or a statement. Maybe they are just a little too Suzanne Lahl, 21, studies biology at the University of Pennsylvania but plans a career in hotel management "I'd like to be an overachiever, but I decided I'd rather have friends than grades." cynical when it comes to the world. But their realism may help them keep shuffling along with their eood intentions. no matter what life throws at them. That resisnation leaves them no illusions to shatter. no false expec- tations to deflate. In the lonR run. even with ~ their fits and starts. the\ may accomplish more of their guals than past generations did. "No one is going to ,a\ we are any-thing hut slrn~ and stead\. hut h t\+ else are we go- ing t go?" asks Ann E%angelista. 2l. of West Chester. Pa. "I could walk this slow ~ and steadv wa%. and mavbe I'll end up win- ~ ning the race." For this crowd. Camelot mav be a place in the future. not just a nostalgia trip to the past. -W7th reporting by Dan Cray/ Los Angeles, Tom Curry/dtlanta and William McWhirter/Chicago

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