What Are the Causes of the Generation Gap?

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The generation gap is the perceived gap of cultural differences between one generation and the other. The reason for the gap can largely be attributed to rapidly changing ideals and societal norms. The term came into use in the 1960s in America when culture and society was changing very dramatically between one generation and the next.

Generational gaps are a modern phenomenon caused by the rapid changes of the modern era. Technological advances have made communication with other cultures and different groups with different ideas much easier. As younger generations grow up with these advances and exposure to new ideas and cultures, they become separated from the previous generation in terms of philosophy and culture. The stereotype of conservative parents and liberal children is a result of the generation gap.

In previous eras before the 1960s, communication was more limited. Younger generations grew up influenced primarily by their parents, their immediate family and their immediate neighbors. Thus, they continued the older generation’s traditions and ideals. However, in the present day, the influences grow larger with every passing decade. By the time children reach adulthood, they have come into contact with a myriad of ideas and cultures, shaping and influencing their thought process.