The root metaphor controlling Lewis Feuer’s vision of the student world is the primal band of brothers falling on the father with bared teeth and drawn knives. “Generational conflict” is the war between students, driven by primitive emotions, and a generation of hated and feared castrating fathers. Since that conflict is one of the “deepest universals of human nature,” the psychological conditions for generational conflict are always present in all societies–students are perennial time bombs in the ivy. But they explode only when a generation of fathers has been “de-authoritized .. . a sense that the older generation has discredited itself and lost its moral standing.”
behavior throughout history. “A complex of urges—altruism, idealism, revolt, self-sacrifice, and self-destruction—searches the social order for strategic avenues of expression.” The movement becomes politicized, and typically attempts to attach itself to “carrier” political movements of a peasantry or working class. When the students “go to the people” they are rejected, largely because they do not appreciate the real needs and aspirations of the peasants and workers. ...
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