Monday, November 2, 2015

What happened when you were twenty?

What happened when you were twenty shaped who you were – especially if you were part of the revolution!

Douwe Draaisma:

"...they [sociologists Schuman and Scott] noticed a marked pattern: what people considered an 'event of national or international importance' showed a peak round what they themselves had experienced in their twenties. For people of sixty-five (in 1985) that was the Second World War, for someone aged forty-five it was the death of Kennedy. Put facetiously: world-shaking is what happens when you are twenty."

Malcolm Gladwell:

"If January 1975 was the dawn of the personal computer age, then who would be in the best position to take advantage of it? * * * If you were more than a few years out of college in 1975, then you belonged to the old paradigm. * * * At the same time, though, you don't want to be too young. You really want to get in on the ground floor, right in 1975, and you can't do that if you're still in high school. So let's also rule out anyone born after, say, 1958. The perfect age to be in 1975, in other words, is old enough to be a part of the coming revolution but not so old that you missed it. Ideally, you want to be twenty or twenty-one, which is to say, born in 1954 or 1955."


Douwe Draaisma. Why Life Speeds Up As You Get Older: How Memory Shapes Our Past. (2001) Translated by Arnold and Erica Pomerans in 2004. Cambridge University Press, 2005. p 194.

Malcolm Gladwell. Outliers: The Story of Success. New York: Little, Brown, and Co., 2008. p. 65.

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