the Middle East and North Africa
"Generation G Comes of Age:
Youth and Revolution in the Middle East and North Africa"
"From the start, Generation X was the first fully globalized generation in human history. We came of age at the moment of transition to contemporary globalization and with a level of world consciousness—that is, consciousness of not merely the existence but also the particularities and validities of myriad other cultures—that is unprecedented in human history. Generation X is nothing if not global, and therefore in this chapter I have changed the letter X to the letter G to indicate the intense web of global interactions at the core of the experience of the post–Baby Boom generation, and the fact that for the first time the commonalities in experience and general knowledge of members of this generation around the world can be said to approach and in some ways equal their still profound differences. More than ever before, the boundaries between “us” and “them” which defined identities throughout history, and particularly in the era of modern nationalisms, are giving way to myriad identities that cut across the borders of culture and ideology which, for better and for ill, heretofore shaped human communities.
In the Middle East and North Africa (hereafter MENA) Generation G—whether in its “Generation Mitterand” iteration or its Generation Mubarak and Ghaddafi—was the first truly global generation. It was the first generation “in itself,” to borrow a phrase from Marx, as members of the cohort globally are more than ever before subject to similar worldwide economic, cultural, and political pressures. And ultimately, with the late but rapidly escalating appearance of the Internet and related technologies, a generation for itself."
~ Mark LeVine, Excerpt from Generation X Goes Global
Mark LeVine. Professor of modern Middle Eastern History at the University of California, Irvine and Distinguished Visiting Professor at the Center for Middle Eastern Studies at Lund University, Sweden. He is the author, among other books, of Heavy Metal Islam: Rock, Resistance, and the Struggle for the Soul of Islam (Random House, 2008) and The Five Year Old who Toppled a Pharaoh (University of California Press, 2012), and a senior columnist with al-Jazeera English.