Nomads and Commanders

I just read this very interesting article about generations from the Society for American Archaeology. The author, Lawrence E. Moore does an excellent job of describing [X] role in society at this time. It provides a great overview of the generational cycles and the specifics of Generation X. I also like the “mythical characters” table – a fun way to describe the archetypes.

This paragraph is particularly instructive:

Reactives [Generation X] are best understood as Nomads and Commanders with keen analytical, management, and writing skills. Nomads wander geography, but also the mind, the soul, and the heart. As they have no cultural agenda other than survival they are not wedded to any theory or methodology. Nomads will pursue concepts that are productive toward planned goals; they will even abandon useful concepts in the desire to experiment with others.
Previous reactive scientists include biologists Alfred Wallace, Thomas Huxley, Julian Huxley, and Francis Galton, economists Friedrich Hayek and Karl Polanyi, and geographer Carl Sauer. There is nothing wrong with being classified with these thinkers even as some of them pursued concepts that are generally unacceptable today (Social Darwinism, eugenics). More than other generations, nomads explore all corners of life, its wonderful pleasures (Mae West) and its darkest powers (Adolf Hitler).

5 thoughts on “Nomads and Commanders”

  1. Interesting article, I loved the analysis of fictional charechters. I guess that if Obi-Wan is supposed to be a prophet and Luke Skywalker a hero Anakin is a Nomad. It really makes some sense when you think about it.

  2. Another thought I had was that Kurt Cobain for Generation X could be compared to Ernest Hemmingway for the Lost Generation.

  3. Interesting and on the whole, pretty accurate analysis on the archetypes of Gen-X. We do have tendency to "go out of the box" and discover new ways of thinking/doing for good or for bad. The Reactives seems to be in a sense, very artistic in their way of finding new things and dealing with problems. I guess that's what it has come to now, the only most artistic and original minds can come up with a way from saving the world from total human corruption.

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