Anyone who knows me knows that I am a fan of the 80s and 90s. These were the decades of my childhood so I hold a special nostalgia for them. But it’s more than that. I feel proud that I was able to see off the 20th century because, that century, more than any other before or sense, made such an impact on our society.
There aren’t enough words that can describe the 20th century and just how pivotal it was in the course of Human history. If you were to take someone from the year 1800 and transport them to the year 1899, they wouldn’t notice a whole lot of difference as far as invention and society. Sure a few big moments here and there, but on a global scale, not a whole lot. Same thing if you were take someone from the year 1700 and put them in the year 1799. They’d still be able to get around and adjust without too much difficulty.
But if you took someone from the year 1900 and put them in the year 1999, the changes were so profound they’d be lost. The whole world changed so significantly in the one hundred year that makes up the 20th century. And what characterizes it is just how different and unique each decade was.
The Great War, the roaring 20’s, the great depression, World War Two, the Nifty Fifties, the groovy sixties, the disco seventies, the rad eighties, the grungy nineties, communism, the rise and fall of empires that had spanned centuries, the break up of countries, invasions, revolutions, all of that took place in one hundred turbulent, transformative years.
I would say that even the first two decades of this current century have nothing on the 20th century. In no other century has there been such a profound difference in generations. My generation was the generation of in betweens and beginnings. The rise of technology and the internet, we saw the century off with the appearance of things like video games, DVDs, and early, very primitive computers and cell phones. The 80s and 90s were a time to appreciate what came before, our parents generation who put an end to segregation while living in the shadow of the Cold War, or our grandparents generation where countries struggled for their liberation from totalitarian governments.
I may have been born at the latter end of the 20th century, but it was still my century. I grew up on the stories of the past that wasn’t so distant as it is now. If you were born after 1995, I would say you should make it a point to look at the past because the 20th century should never be forgotten. There are lessons in it, very important lessons that need to be remembered by future generations.