- Get the Facts: Marketing and Materialism. Campaign for a Commercial Free Childhood, December 21, 2018.
- Read article and view video posted on Education Insider News Blog. Generation Me: Study Finds College Students Lack Empathy. June 2010.
- Rising Trend: Social Responsibility is High on Millennials’ List. Huffington Post, February 3, 2018.
- Corporate Social Responsibility is a Key in Attracting Millennials. A Lumesse White Paper, February 2018.
Reading questions for classroom discussion – no written response
What do you think of the different perspectives in these readings on youth as consumers and employees? How to account for the differences? Can one hold values of materialism while also being socially-conscious?
Project: citizen/consumer timeline
Overview: What’s shaped you as a citizen? Your concern for the common good? What’s shaped you as a consumer? How have these identities impacted your social relationships?
Create a timeline (or some other visual model) mapping these comparative histories. Reflect back on family, school, community, peer, media, and leisure experiences to consider and mark significant moments, activities and practices. See guidelines below.
Write 2 one-paragraph stories: After creating the timeline, write two stories:
- Reflect on a significant moment in which your identity as a consumer impacted your relationship with others. This could be a parent or peer; it could involve issues of self-esteem, competition, conflict, marker of income-class difference, cohort acceptance.
- Reflect on a significant moment in which you expressed your identity as a citizen, where you thought and acted for the common good.
Guidelines for Timeline
- Look up the definition of what constitutes a citizen. One communication scholar characterizes a “classic model” of citizenship as including dimensions of “civic duty, public-spiritedness, and self-education.” This might include voting, volunteer activity, debate, political activism, regular reading of newspapers.
- On an 8.5×11 paper or using a computer, create a timeline of these two life trajectories: citizen/consumer.
- Chart notable moments, e.g. first memories of toys, electronic devices, fashion items.
- Where appropriate, include family, peers, school, sports, other connections. This could include conflicts.
- At particularly important moments, include brief descriptive text.
- Be creative.
- Somewhere on the page, include some biographical context, e.g. hometown, family size, economic-class background, and other important issues that might have impacted this story.
Written assignments should be single-spaced & typed in Times New Roman or Arial (size 12 font), 1-inch margins all around. PROOFREAD! First page should have a heading (single-spaced) with name, date, and assignment title.