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College Youth: Psychohistory and Prospects


by Donald Light, Jr. & Robert S. Laufer — 1975

Our purpose here is to understand both the tremendous change which has come over college students since the 1960s and the continuities which today's youth have with the past. Looking at today's college students and the tone they set for their generation, many observers have concluded that the protest generation of the sixties was an anomaly, a unique product of special circumstances. This essay, however, presents the opposite and less obvious case: that youth of both decades share deeply rooted experiences which continue to generate discontent and painful contradiction; that students today have similar needs and search for personal meaning in a technological society as did the generation before them; and that the present, hard-working, conservative tone of campus life is caused by repressive forces which will pass.


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This article originally appeared as NSSE Yearbook Vol 74, No. 1.


Cite This Article as: Teachers College Record Volume 76 Number 5, 1975, p. 93-114
http://www.tcrecord.org ID Number: 19203, Date Accessed: 12/16/2017 11:34:57 AM

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About the Author
  • Donald Light, Jr.
    Princeton University
    E-mail Author
    DONALD LIGHT, JR. is a professor in the sociology department at Princeton University.
  • Robert Laufer
    Brooklyn College
    E-mail Author
    ROBERT S. LAUFER is a professor of sociology at Brooklyn College.
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