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A highly readable and entertaining first look at how today’s members of iGen—the children, teens, and young adults born in the mid-1990s and later—are vastly different from their Millennial predecessors, and from any other generation, from the renowned psychologist and author of Generation Me.
With generational divides wider than ever, parents, educators, and employers have an urgent need to understand today’s rising generation of teens and young adults. Born in the mid-1990s to the mid-2000s and later, iGen is the first generation to spend their entire adolescence in the age of the smartphone. With social media and texting replacing other activities, iGen spends less time with their friends in person—perhaps why they are experiencing unprecedented levels of anxiety, depression, and loneliness.
But technology is not the only thing that makes iGen distinct from every generation before them; they are also different in how they spend their time, how they behave, and in their attitudes toward religion, sexuality, and politics. They socialize in completely new ways, reject once sacred social taboos, and want different things from their lives and careers. More than previous generations, they are obsessed with safety, focused on tolerance, and have no patience for inequality. iGen is also growing up more slowly than previous generations: eighteen-year-olds look and act like fifteen-year-olds used to.
As this new group of young people grows into adulthood, we all need to understand them: Friends and family need to look out for them; businesses must figure out how to recruit them and sell to them; colleges and universities must know how to educate and guide them. And members of iGen also need to understand themselves as they communicate with their elders and explain their views to their older peers. Because where iGen goes, so goes our nation—and the world.
About the Author
Jean M. Twenge, PhD, a professor of psychology at San Diego State University, is the author of more than a hundred scientific publications and two books based on her research, Generation Me and The Narcissism Epidemic, as well as The Impatient Woman’s Guide to Getting Pregnant. Her research has been covered in Time, The Atlantic, Newsweek, The New York Times, USA TODAY, and The Washington Post. She has also been featured on the Today show, Good Morning America, Fox and Friends, CBS This Morning, and National Public Radio. She lives in San Diego with her husband and three daughters.
Named one of the "Best Tech Books of 2017" by Wired Magazine
“We’ve all been desperate to learn what heavy use of social media does to adolescents. Now, thanks to Twenge’s careful analysis, we know: It is making them lonely, anxious, and fragile—especially our girls. If you are a parent, teacher, or employer, you must read this fascinating book to understand how different iGen is from the millennials you were just beginning to figure out.”
— Jonathan Haidt, NYU-Stern School of Business, author of The Righteous Mind
“Jean Twenge collates the data on a generation and not only surprises readers with astonishing discoveries, but also helps us to make sense of what to do with those discoveries. This book is a must-read for anyone interested in understanding students.”
— Dr. Tim Elmore, author of Marching Off the Map, President of GrowingLeaders.com
“The reigning expert on generational change weighs in on the iGen, making a case for dramatic changes in just the last five years. Few accounts have seemed more sensational, and few have seemed more true.”
— Lisa Wade, PhD, author of American Hookup: The New Culture of Sex on Campus
"This book is a game-changer. If you want to understand how to parent, teach, recruit, employ, market to, or win the vote of anyone born between 1995-2012, you need to read this book. iGen will change the way you think about the next generation of Americans."
— Julianna Miner, Professor of Public Health, George Mason University
"Dr. Twenge brings to light, with longitudinal scientific data and personal interviews, a generation that is truly unique. An easy and scientifically informative read.”
— Larry D. Rosen, Ph.D., Professor Emeritus and author of 7 books on the impact of technology including The Distracted Mind: Ancient Brains in a High-Tech World (with Adam Gazzaley, MD, Ph.D., MIT Press, 2016)
“Stocked with valuable insights, iGen is a game changer and this decade’s ‘must read’ for parents, educators and leaders. Her findings are riveting, her points are compelling, her solutions are invaluable.”
— Michele Borba, Ed.D., Educational Psychologist and author of UnSelfie: Why Empathetic Kids Succeed in Our All-About-Me World
“Jean Twenge is the ultimate authority in generational differences who has been at the forefront of many trends. Her latest book iGen charts the surprising new normal of the current generation. It's a must read for anyone who is interested in young people and technology, filled with fascinating data that shines a light on many unique aspects of youth today.”
— Yalda T Uhls, author of Media Moms and Digital Dads: A Fact-Not-Fear Approach to Parenting in the Digital Age
“We all have impressions about the newest crop of teens and emerging adults, but what really is going on? Jean Twenge is the expert in the use of normative data, collected in systematic surveys over the years, to understand how the experiences, attitudes, and psychological characteristics of young people have changed over generations. Rigorous statistical analyses, combined with insightful interviews and excellent writing, create here a trustworthy, intriguing story.”
— Peter Gray, Research Professor of Psychology at Boston College and author of Free to Learn: Why Unleashing the Instinct to Play Will Make Our Children Happier, More Self-Reliant, and Better Students for Life.
“iGen is a monumental scientific study, and it reveals astonishing conclusions about today’s emerging adults. If you’re interested in unpacking the habits and the psyche of America’s future, start with this book!"
— Eli J. Finkel, author of The All-Or-Nothing Marriage
“A new look at the next generation. . . surprising.”
"The convergence of these diverse personal narratives with the data analysis lends a compelling sense of authority to the work...Technology in the last 30 years has not simply changed American culture, but transformed it. Twenge's book is a wake-up call and poses an essential question: Where do we go from here?"
— Chicago Tribune