The Dumbest Generation: Young Americans in the Digital Age

Mark Bauerlein, Ph.D.

Thursday, December 14 at 2:00 pm

(Part two of a two-part episode)

Speaking in Maine takes us next to Portland and the University of New England for two talks.  In part one of a two-part episode, Professor Jason Brennan from Georgetown University speaks on about the fairness of democracy. In part two of the two-part episode, Professor Mark Bauerlein from Emory University speaks on “the Dumbest Generation: Young Americans in the Digital Age.”

As the tidal wave of social media engulfs teens and 20-year-olds, the moral and intellectual formation necessary to mature adulthood is increasingly jeopardized. We are living in an age in which debate and conversation are deteriorating into cheap jibes and rancor and clichés, just what we find in the comment rolls on YouTube videos. The instruction to be gained from great books and art is losing out to the mores of gossip and ridicule and youth culture conformity. Professor Bauerlein will outline these trends and propose ways of surviving them.

Mark Bauerlein is senior editor at First Things and Professor of English at Emory University, where he has taught since earning his Ph.D. in English at UCLA in 1989. He served as director of the Office of Research and Analysis at the National Endowment for the Arts from 2003-05. He is the author of several books, including The Dumbest Generation: How the Digital Age Stupefies Young Americans and Jeopardizes Our Future (2008), Negrophobia: A Race Riot in Atlanta (2001), and Literary Criticism: An Autopsy (1998), and he has published numerous reviews and commentaries in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Boston Globe, Weekly Standard, The Guardian, Chronicle of Higher Education, and other national periodicals. He has appeared on CNN, CBS News, Fox and Friends, BBC World News, All Things Considered, C-SPAN and other national media outlets.


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