Student Sample work American literature 2nd

Generation Gap – Compare and Contrast Essay My father and I are very similar in both our personalities and our views of the world. However there are many differences between us and most of these differences are caused by the generation gap between us. Some of these differences include our rolemodels, the celebrities we most admire, our culture and social situation when we were growing up, and the economic and political situation when we were growing up. One major difference between my father and I is our respective role-models. When my father was growing up in Long beach California, there was one person that he really admired, and it wasn’t one of his parents. The one person who my father truly looked up to when he was growing up was Bill Samaras, his high school science teacher. Bill was the person who got my dad interested in marine biology, sailing, and boats. He was somewhat of a crazy science teacher who would actually take his students to the beach in order to dissect a whale. My father was truly inspired by Bill, and he still considers him a truly great man. I however, unlike my father, get along very well with my parents and consider them my role-models. My father is one of the most philosophical people I know, except maybe myself, and I admire his success in life. While he usually can’t help me with my math or science homework, he usually has something interesting to say. My mother is a very practical thinker, she is very good at seeing things from a neutral perspective and she is very open minded. She is also very patient with me especially when I end up droning on about some new development in quantum physics or something of the like. My father and I are quite different in respect to our different choices of role-models, with my father choosing his high school teacher, and me choosing my parents. This could be because of our different generational backgrounds or mere cause and effect. Aside from role-models, my father and I have very different choices of celebrities of whom we admire, primarily because of the divide of our generations. When asked about celebrities he admired when he was growing up, my father said, “Rowan and Martin, and The Beatles.” I didn’t even know who Rowan and martin were before my father mentioned them; they were out of style long before I was born. But I do know who the Beatles were and I do like their music, even though they were popular long before I was born. When I was asked about celebrities I admire I responded by saying names like Brian Greene, Neil deGrasse Tyson, Albert Einstein, and Stephen Hawking, all physicists. My interest in science is more likely a difference in personality than a difference caused by a generational gap, but this could show that my generation is more interested in science than my fathers, though it is doubtful.

The culture that has surrounded me my whole life is very different from the culture that my father grew up in. When my father was growing up, some of the most popular music was rock and roll, and while rock and roll is still very prominent during my own childhood, it was especially popular during my father’s time. During my childhood the most popular music has been hip-hop music which involves many mechanical beats and automated sounds along with auto tuned voices. One of the biggest culture differences between my father and I is the information difference between us. I have grown up in what has been dubbed the information age, because of the massive development of computer technology. Almost every child over the age of ten in the United States has a cell phone, or some mobile device, that can get almost any information known to humankind with the push of a few buttons. I have lived through my childhood surrounded by all of the information in the world, but it was very different for my father’s generation. When my father was growing up, there were no personal computers, or mobile phones. There were barely any movies compared to the tens of thousands of titles available today. My father's generation grew up isolated from most of society learning of others mostly through the radio and out of town friends. This is one of the biggest parts of the generation gap between my father and I. While My father and I grew up in very different environments due to a conundrum of factors, we still hold very similar values. One value that my father and I both have very similar philosophies about, is the meaning of life. While neither my father or I are religious we both believe that life is very important and precious. As well, both of us believe that the goal of life is to exist in harmony with the universe in a metaphorical sense. One difference between our two philosophies is that I also believe in a more scientific idea of life, which defines life as energy and matter attempting to become infinitely more complex. My father does not share this philosophy, which could mean that my generation has a more scientific viewpoint on philosophy, or it could simply be a conflict of interest between my father and I. One major difference between my father and I is our childhood dream of what we want to be when we grow up. My father's childhood dream was to have a GTO with a surfboard on top and to drive up and down the coast, never staying in one place. This dream was rather common for my father's generation, partially because of popular films and cultural styles. On the other hand, my dream for my future is to become some kind of scientific researcher or engineer and to work on some great life changing project that will affect the world and beyond. Much of this dream comes from my interest in science and my curiosity about the unknown. These two very different dreams show a conflicting point of interest between my father’s generation and my own. My father’s dream involves “getting away from it all” and travelling and meeting new people. My dream involves scientific curiosity and making the world a better place. This difference is very likely caused because my generation has a different idea about science and more scientific knowledge than my father’s generation.

In conclusion, my father and I share many similarities along with many differences, some of which are caused by a generation gap between the two of us, but which mostly are contrived from differences in our childhoods that were not necessarily caused by our different ages. Some of the things that separate myself from my father include celebrities we admire, and the role-models that we looked up to, and these were most likely caused by a generation gap. But things like values and our definition my families definition of life have not changed much over the passage of time. While some things change, most things stay the same, and these things are reflected by the similarities that are found by comparing the generation of my father and my own generation.