Saturday, May 31, 2008

Youth Culture, part 1 of 4: Artifacts

Jesus models incarnational ministry to us... that is to say, he came into our world. Following Jesus' model, we are called to go into our students' world(s), wherever that may be and wherever that may take us. There are lots of ways to do this, but this next series of posts focuses on one way in particular--learning about youth today and their culture.

In asking “Who are youth?” and "What is their culture?" it is helpful to consider 4 elements of identity formation in culture: (1) Artifacts, (2) Behaviors, (3) Ideas, and (4) Language. I'll take each of these in turn, one post at a time, in the coming days:

(1) "Artifacts" are what a future archaeologist would find if she or he were to dig up remains from this time and place. Artifacts are what youth wear, carry, and consume. These are best thought of as the status symbols that define a given culture.

Some examples of youth artifacts today (complete with hyperlinks for you to follow!) are:

Uniforms, Jackets, and Emblems
Clothes and Style (and Accessories)
Cell phones
How they wear their hair
Messaged T-shirts
Piercings and tattoos
Beauty and Athletic Ability
Music Videos


Any more you can think of?

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