2008 Abstracts Stage 3

Philosophical Concept of what it means to be Emo

This project will look at the Sorrows of Young Werther in Conjunction with an example of emotionally hardcore internet blogging in order to establish the significance of emotional intensity seen today in youth groups. The sorrows of young Werther depicts a fictional 18th century character that holds many similarities to the type of life many modern youths aspire too. Primarily this project is concerned with exploring the emotionally hardcore movement that is taking place, and how this will affect future social change. Werther channelled his emotional intensity through art and literature, using it as a way of expressing his anguish. The emotionally hardcore individual uses art and music as a form of expression, and literature as a way to ‘blog’ this way of life, through means of fictional and factual storytelling, and also poetry. Using concepts of alienation, aesthetics, romanticism and existentialism, this project will analysis the emotionally hardcore individual, society’s objections and the emotionally hardcore movement as a whole. In historical format this project will look at how the sorrows of young Werther symbolises an apparent social theme of alienation from the masses. Secondary to the above, the thoughts of Schiller will be examined with reference to romanticism as a whole. This hopefully will shed light on the importance of emotion, passion and Romance within. Hopefully this project will look at the emotionally hardcore movement in a way that has never been undertaken before, therefore examining a section of social progression that is personal and individual to me.

2006 Abstracts Stage 3

Philosophical Investigation into British Youth Culture in the Twenty-First Century

In my project this year I have decided to investigate the area of youth culture in Twenty-First Century Britain. What are the factors which make our younger generation feel so misunderstood by their elders? Using various media sources I have drawn upon examples of contemporary British culture where the younger generation seem to be veering off any track of recognised social development. These areas include crime, identity, media, artistic expression, drug use, gangs and many more. In my final project I hope to find some links between the changes in youth culture as we know it and some philosophical concepts which I have studied during my degree. The first section of my project will concentrate on the growing gap between the attitudes and characteristics of the older generation and the younger generation. I hope to use Nietzsche’s work on the master and slave morality to explain the reversal of the attitudes towards the elderly from a stance of respect for experience and wisdom to one of burden and frustration. It seems we now value the progress, originality and vitality present in the youth of today as far more important than anything the older generation can offer unlike fifty years ago when children were taught to respect their elders. It seems this has resulted in a loss of communication and understanding between the two groups, where the older group was once seen as dominant and the younger group as passive, we now encourage the youth of today and the elderly are either forgotten about by the state, or at least take a secondary role in society. The next section will address the growing need for our youth to differentiate themselves into identity groups depending on their fashion, music, consumer or social tastes. Whether it is choosing a particular group of friends or enjoying a special past-time the younger generation seem intent on defining every individual into a certain group or trend. Such examples as “Goths”, “Chavs”, “Hippies” or “Ras” are common in most school playgrounds. I will also look at internet sites such as “” and other blog sites and using the work of Vattimo and his “Transparent Society” text I hope to gain a better understanding of the growing need for personal narratives in the Twenty-First Century and why our younger generation require these categories to “fit in” with society. The final section of my project will deal with the growing concern towards the anti-social behaviour displayed by the youth of today. This will include all aspects of daily life from truancy, graffiti, theft, drug use, to more serious crimes such as assault and rape. Why is it we feel the youngsters of Britain these days have a lack of respect for authority? Could it be linked with some changing social dynamics put forward by thinkers such as Beck and Giddens, or the increased pressure put on our children to follow a globally fast paced, informational, consumer driven society? In my final project I hope to address these issues and find some answers to some of the most pressing issues concerning Twenty-First Century Britain.