Reconsidering “Digital Natives”

Things have been quiet (okay, completely silent) around Geek Studies lately, as I’ve recently moved from Philly to Boston, started teaching a graphic design class, and focused more closely on work that takes me away from the blog. And things will likely remain quiet until I defend my dissertation—but every now and then, something will occur to me that will make me need to speak up again.

What’s got me blogging now is a funny coincidence: Just as I was commenting to my friend and fellow Annenberger Moira about the concept of “digital natives” needing some revamping (if not outright rejecting), she pointed me to “Generational Myth,” an article in the most recent Chronicle of Higher Ed by Siva Vaidhyanathan. (Link updated to direct to the free version—thanks, Siva!) The long and the short of the article is precisely what I have been observing in my own class: The generation of “digital natives” might not be so native to the digital as many presume, and is certainly not so homogeneous as to be able to be described by a single way of thinking across the board.

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