Blast from the past!

I haven’t actually read this book yet, but I feel as though it might be based on some of the same fears we have with today’s media. It was published in 1990. Since I was a child then I’m looking forward to reading about how adults viewed my generation. Has anyone else read it?

Book - Endangered Minds

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13 Responses to Blast from the past!

  1. How interesting! Maybe these concerns have been a round a long time! “Those kids at the sock hop – they don’t think!” “Those kids at the Woodstock – they don’t think!” 🙂


  2. Kristen Amaral says:

    Hmm…can’t say I have!


  3. Andrea Meszaros says:

    @michael maybe it goes back even farther than that! I once heard some explaining how Shakespeare criticized teenagers.

    Interestingly enough, I was just thinking about how adults often criticize young people for making up new language. Someone the other day even said that it scares her that they make up new words. Living in a foreign country taking Hungarian words and anglicizing them must make me and my friends very scary and we’re over the age 30!


  4. @ameszaros I met a woman at talk that got really upset about the word “selfie.” She said she didn’t like words that were not “grammatically correct” and not “real.” I said: you know it was added to the dictionary. She was stunned/irked.


  5. Andrea Meszaros says:

    @michael interesting comment on grammar in this TEDtalk Erin McKean says grammar is one of the many reasons why people say they don’t like new words.

    At the same time as a teacher there is still a need to teach style and when certain words are appropriate. For example at the end of an essay written by a a high school senior for their English class it most likely is nor appropriate to write ttyl!


  6. @ameszaros SO TRUE! Maybe not emojis either! 🙂


  7. Monica St. Dennis says:

    I’d just like to take a moment to remind everyone that Shakespeare invented DOZENS of new words:

    My sister, who is a professional Shakespeare scholar, says that he probably didn’t actually invent as many as most people think he did — these slang words were already being spoken, and he’s just the first person to have written them down. I think the whole thing is SUPER interesting, considering how strongly people feel now about which words are and are not in the dictionary — the word “ain’t” is definitely in my dictionary and has been for awhile ( but my Mom still scolds me if she hears me using it.

    I’m curious about what makes a word legitimate. I think there’s a research paper in here somewhere…


  8. Andrea Meszaros says:

    @monica actually, I was thinking about Shakespeare and inventing words when I wrote this.

    Another interesting thing about language is I don’t think all slang is new. For example nay is the actual word for no in Swedish (although its spelled nej). Hey (hej) is also the standard for saying hello and goodbye in Swedish. I don’t think these are new Swedish words or new to English. They just have different levels of being ‘respectable’.


  9. Monica St. Dennis says:

    @ameszaros — I didn’t even think about this before, but wasn’t “Hello” originally somewhat suspect, too? I think it only started catching on because of the telephone, but now I would say it’s the most formal way to greet someone in-person. This is a totally fascinating sidebar. Thank you for bringing it up. 🙂


  10. Andrea Meszaros says:

    @michael I’m about 3/4 through the book and although I don’t think that Sesame Street destroyed people who are now in their 30s and 40s ability to read, I do think it has good insights into how parents (and librarians) can lay down a foundation for children’s literacy. Overall, I think it is more helpful to me than Carr’s book.


  11. @ameszaros – Nice! Thanks for the update. I KNOW Sesame Street did not destroy those folks! Neither did the Electric Company! I loved both.


  12. Andrea Meszaros says:

    @michael I watch Sesame Street, too! It is interesting that the author says that it was (is) the economically disadvantaged children who were/are hindered the most in their reading from Sesame Street. That I cannot speak too.


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