Millennials: Self-Confident or Narcissistic?

Before the first day of class and prior to reading the “Millennial Muddle” article by Eric Hoover, I had never thought about what nickname and what type of description would be bestowed upon my generation. According to Neil Howe and William Strauss, Millennials are self-confident and are looking to be active contributors and are always seeking to do big things in society as a whole; however, Jean Twenge posits that Millennials are in fact narcissistic and thus more concerned about their own well-being rather than others. Both of these theories are both interpretations based upon the type of rewarding, special, and positive environment that represents the Millennials’ upbringing by our parents. I actually believe a middle ground between these two theories is presented in the teen sitcoms Veronica Mars and Freaks and Geeks. In terms of the shows’ representation of the female protagonists, Veronica Mars and Lindsay Weir, they both show a desire to help those around them, while at the same time being independent and looking out for their own self interest. They show a sense of acceptance of who they have become and are willing to take risks without having to disappoint their parents who have offered them praise, love, and comfort. Although “Millennial” audience members may not necessarily feel like they are in the same position as these two girls, viewers can empathize with them and can admire the self-confidence that they both portray and even root for them to succeed, even though they themselves may be in a social group that is in conflict with these protagonists.


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