TOEFL Essay: Generation X

1. Generation X

Generation X got its name from a novel written by Douglas Coupland in 1991. The term is meant to describe a large subculture of white middle-class kids born after the baby boom, who now, as they enter adulthood, feel cheated by history: the boomers had full fun in the sixties, and they took all the good jobs and relaxed in their media-fed sense if cultural superiority.

Generation X is just out of college, and they’re not thrilled about their prospects: they are overeducated and underemployed, and, worse, their disillusionment isn’t winning them any sympathy from their elders - no one appears to know, or care, what they are going through. Until now, that is. The advertising agency McCann has recently done some research into what what makes this generation tick.

Mc Cann’s findings reveal that generation X, typically in the 18-29 age range, is a very scattered group who don’t allow themselves to be bunched under one common title. They are used to picking the best bits from television and ideologies. They are cynical and don’t trust political institutions. They think rebellion is a waste of time.

These qualities make their parents, who were young in the sixties and still are radically-minded, moan. The generation gap between them can be so wide that the parents don’t realize that, in fact, the X-generation does have a social conscience. For instance, environmental problems and equality are very important to them. It’s just that their way of protesting is different. Instead of marching through the streets with banners, the youth of today contact the decision-makers direct - through the Internet.

The X-generation is also the first really international generation. Throughout the world, their common denominators are temporary jobs, uncertainty about the future, and concern about racism and the environment. Because of today’s economic climate, their attitude to work is different. But this is no excuse for calling them a lost generation. They don’t mind working on projects and on a limited contract or being self-employed. To them, material goods and work status are not essential.

Generation X got to know the media and computers when they were still in diapers. Advertisements are like an open book to them, so it’s difficult to sell ‘needs’ to them. No wonder that marketing men are getting worried - there are nearly 70 million Xs in western Europe as a whole.

(388 words)

What do you think of the above essay?

Englishuser

TOEFL listening lectures: What does the professor say about utopian socialists?

Generation X got its name from a novel written by Douglas Coupland in 1991. The term is meant to describe a large subculture of white middle-class kids born after the baby boom who now as they enter adulthood, feel cheated by history: the boomers had TOTAL/UNALLOYED fun in the sixties and they took all the good jobs and relaxed in their media-fed sense OF??cultural superiority.

Generation X is just out of college, and they’re not TOO thrilled about their prospects: they are overeducated and underemployed, and worse, their disillusionment isn’t winning them any sympathy from their elders - no one appears to know or care what they are going through. Until now, that is. The advertising agency McCann has recently done some research into what (what) makes this generation tick.

Mc Cann’s findings reveal that generation X, typically in the 18-29 age range, is a very DISPARATE group who don’t allow themselves to be BUNDLED under one common title. They are used to picking the best bits from television and ideologies. They are cynical and don’t trust political institutions. They think rebellion is a waste of time.

These qualities make their parents, who were young in the sixties and REMAIN radically-minded, RESORT TO moanING. (I added this to restore the balance of the sentence)The generation gap between them can be so wide that the parents don’t realize that in fact the X-generation does INDEED have a social conscience. For instance, environmental problems and equality are wery important to them. It’s just that their way of protesting is different. Instead of marching through the streets with banners, the youth of today contact the decision-makers direct - through the Internet.

The X-generation is also the first really international generation. Throughout the world their common denominators are temporary jobs, uncertainty about the future and concern about racism and the environment. Because of today’s economic climate, their attitude to work is different. But this is no excuse for calling them a ‘lost’ generation. They don’t mind working on projects and on a limited contract or being self-employed. To them, material goods and work status are not essential.

Generation X got to know the media and computers when they were still in diapers. Advertisements are like an open book to them so it’s difficult to sell ‘needs’ to them/TO PERSUADE THEM THEY ‘NEED’ THINGS. No wonder that marketing men are getting worried - there are nearly 70 million Xs in western Europe as a whole.

[i]Pretty good, I’d say. I’ve just added some alternatives and cut out what I believe is an excess of commas. You seem to have a touch of what the Fowler brothers called ‘spot plague’.

[/i]

Alan

Hi Alan,

Thank you for your suggestions. Is ‘direct’ correctly used in the text? What about writing ‘directly’ instead?

Englishuser

Hi,

‘Direct’ can be used both as an adjective and an adverb. In your sentence it is used as an adverb and means without any intermediary or intervention from another source. ‘Directly’ is also an adverb and suggests ‘immediately’ ‘without delay’. You could put them both in one sentence as:

I suggest you get in touch with the manager direct and that you do this directly.

A

Hi Englishuser,

Your essay is quite impressive. When did you write it, how long did it take and why did you write it?
Regards,
Torsten[YSaerTTEW443543]

TOEIC listening, talks: Voice mail announcement[YSaerTTEW443543]

Hi Alan and Torsten,

Alan: Thank you for the reply. ‘Directly’ also means “without any intermediary or intervention”, so people obviously get to choose between ‘direct’ and ‘directly’.

Torsten: The essay was written for an EFL textbook.

Englishuser

Hi EU

I also think your essay was good. Don’t forget to correct the spelling of ‘very’, before you publish. :wink:

Hi Amy,

Thank you for your comments. ‘Very’ spelt the wrong way and some other mistakes are present in the text because I had to retype the text. The original version is, or at least I hope it is after having been copy-edited and proofread, free from such “lapses”. Still, Alan has made some great suggestions as to how you could make the text even better.

Englishuser