By: Anand Venigalla
Why are millennials obsessed with memories of the ‘90s and early 2000s? It seems like there is a certain appeal to the current generation of young Americans about a remembrance of the past. Maybe we realize that while we can’t replicate the past, we can learn from it, and by looking back, look forward. Perhaps among an increasingly creative generation, couldn’t that be what animates our obsession with things past?
“I think a big part of it is that the world has been going through a lot of changes over the past couple of decades,” says Adam Silverstein. “The world keeps changing more and more,” he says, attributing it to the rise of social media and the Internet. “A lot of people want to return to a simpler time...a time when they didn’t have any concerns. When they were younger, they had less responsibility.” Perhaps, in looking to the past, we seek for simplicity in our own ever-complex lives.
In addition, there are some cool things from that time period that we millennials want to get back. Movies, TV shows, games, toys — many of these, in hindsight, were made with a greater understanding of younger audiences than today’s media seems to have.
As student Amber Kinofsky told The Bottom Line, “In our generation, things were actually made for kids, and [TV shows] were made intelligently too, so they are still good when you watch them later.”
It seems like there is an element of permanence to some of the creations from the ‘90s and 2000s that attract millennials because they were made to last -- and lasting quality is something not limited to the ‘90s, but is available for all time.
I wonder if the desire for simpler and better times is more than nostalgia. As millennials enter their early and mid-adulthood, I wonder how their nostalgia for the ‘90s and early 2000s will shine through their future work and lifestyles. Will history repeat itself once more through millennials’ desire to bring back their childhood golden age? Only time will tell.