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Or, the thoughts of several frustrated intellectuals on Sociology, Gaming, Science, Politics, Science Fiction, Religion, and whatever the hell else strikes their fancy. There is absolutely no reason why you should read this blog. None. Seriously. Go hit your back button. It's up in the upper left-hand corner of your browser... it says "Back." Don't say we didn't warn you.

Friday, March 09, 2007

I'm not a narcissist- I'm just more important than you are.

Over on the fantastic Academic Secret blog Thistle asks whether students are really more self-centered than they used to be. In asking this, Thistle points to both another post and to a pair of articles that report on a finding that college students are more narcissistic than they used to be:

...She [Jean Twenge of San Diego State] and four other researchers from the University of Michigan, University of Georgia and University of South Alabama looked at the results of psychological surveys taken by more than 16,000 college students across the country over more than 25 years.

The Narcissistic Personality Inventory asks students to react to such statements as: "If I ruled the world, it would be a better place," "I think I am a special person" and "I like to be the center of attention."

The study found that almost two-thirds of recent college students had narcissism scores that were above the average 1982 score. Thirty percent more college students showed elevated narcissism in 2006 than in 1982.


Judging by posts appearing elsewhere, including one on Practicing Idealist's blog, the answer might well be yes. At the same time, however, I'm reluctant to engage in such sweeping generalizations. I don't know that an entire generation is really more self-centered than previous ones. I'm not sure I believe the personality inventories are that reliable over time.

But if they are more narcissistic perhaps, rather than condemning them, we should ask ourselves: who helped them to become that way?

If there's something wrong with kids today, maybe we should be wondering what's the matter with us for raising them that way.

I'm just sayin.

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1 Comments:

Anonymous alienacean said...

perhaps its just that this little snots are inundated with ways to express themselves, brought on by the intersection of advanced industrial capitalism and advanced communication technologies: http://nymag.com/news/features/27341/

Friday, March 09, 2007 4:28:00 PM  

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