Generation at the Crossroads: Apathy and Action on the American Campus
by Paul Loeb
Rutgers University Press, 1994
Cloth: 978-0-8135-2144-2 | eISBN: 978-0-8135-5657-4
Library of Congress Classification LA229.L62 1994
Dewey Decimal Classification 378.1981


Challenging prevailing media stereotypes, Generation at the Crossroads explores the beliefs and choices of the students who came of age in the 1980s and 1990s. For seven years, at over a hundred campuses in thirty states, Paul Loeb asked students about the values they held. He examines their concepts of responsibility, the links they draw between present and future, and how they view themselves in relation to the larger human community in which they live. He brings us a range of voices, from "I'm not that kind of person," to "I had to take a stand." Loeb looks at how the rest of us can serve young people as better role models, and give them courage and vision to help build a better world.

This insightful book explores the culture of withdrawal that dominated American campuses through most of the eighties. He locates its roots in historical ignorance, relentless individualism, mistrust of social movements, and a general isolation from urgent realities. He examines why a steadily increasing minority has begun to take on critical public issues, whether environmental activism, apartheid, hunger and homelessness, affordable education, or racial and sexual equity. Loeb looks at individuals who have overcome precisely the barriers he has described, and how their journeys can become models. The generational choices he explores will shape our common future.

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