The coming of age essay

That might seem an odd thing to be optimistic about. Many of my colleagues in physics are inspired by the prospect of achieving a Theory of Everything.

The coming of age essay

Chris reached for the Winstons on the ledge behind him.

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I bent over to pick up my detective magazine. The transition from childhood to adulthood might be one the most life-changing experiences a person can go through.

The coming of age essay

What is certain is that children — passing into adulthood — need guidance from their elders about how to mature into a fully-fleshed adult. America does not that have that in a healthy way. We get movies — like Superbad — that show boys growing into adults without any guidance from neither their male relatives or female family members.

Sorry, that sounds like an inversion of chick flicks: In Stand By Me, a group of young boys go searching for the body of a dead man — the body of a missing person in the community.

The body is some miles away in a forest, right beside some train tracks. Their adventure over the course of two days shows a group of young boys — on the cusp of manhood — stridling both childhood and manhood.

Their individual struggles are laid bare; The coming of age essay dreams for the future are sketched out. It is a well told tale that has the honesty of a time gone by.

No, these were four boys who were worried about their future, their place in the world and the personal failings of their respective parents. The narrator dealt with the death of his older brother, who was the star child.

He was the star football player, the popular one in high school. His sole source of support is the narrator. The other two boys have stories, but they are not relevant here.

The boys supported one another — faults and all — not with the immature, self-absorbed preening we see in later coming of age movies. They truly support one another, despite all the hell they give each other. The story ends with the narrator contemplating the fickleness of success in life and how the more things change, the more they stay the same.

How true change is so very difficult. The movie concludes with Ben E. While it tries in vain to be thoughtful at the end, it seems the growth into adulthood for men had become something of a huge joke. Admit it, you liked the movie. It was very funny with many memorable scenes and lines.

The infantile posture of the movie is worn at the edges a good bit by the pursuit of love instead of sex with women.

The coming of age essay

However, there are two issues here. Further, a boy becomes a man when he loses his virginity, presumably to a female. The mastering of a craft, raising children into adulthood and inner peace are all more important than skirt chasing or a relationship with a woman.

The whole chasing love in American Pie is simply a poorly veiled smokescreen for a society that does not truly value love and relationships, but one that idolizes sex.

Getting married already implies sexual access, but also the legitimization of a relationship that will result in children and involvement in the community. Superbad was released into great financial success and critical approval. I will assume you have watched the movie, but it involves a group of young men — the same age as the characters in American Pie — but something has changed.

One main character Jonah Hill is extremely fat, the nebbish nerd Michael Cera is many steps back from his counterpart in American Pie Finch and the loser McLovin is a complete and utter goober. The loser gets laid for a few seconds before getting busted by the cops raiding the party.

What do we learn in Superbad? Sex is something that a man might get. Unlike their counterparts in American Pie, who all actually get laid and make decisions about relationships — in Superbad, all we get are some losers attempting to woo women with being able to acquire booze.

All of this stands in astoundingly stark contrast with Stand By Me. First off, the maturation process begins at puberty, not some needlessly delayed state in late adolescence.

Second, girls are something discussed, but not obsessed over. Lastly, is the seriousness that accompanies the coming of age in Stand By Me.INTRODUCTION.

Whether by accident or design, or a combination of both, Margaret Mead became an American culture heroine. Particularly to women. In her public career she resolved a set of major conflicting values in American society that afflict the female role.

I love it.

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If a more enchanted movie comes along this year, I’ll be surprised. The love goes beyond appreciation of an impeccably made coming-of-age story.

Along with "The Florida Project," Greta Gerwig's movie represents a new era of "forced coming-of-age stories" that speak to our troubled times. Try Our Friends At: The Essay Store. Free English School Essays. We have lots of essays in our essay database, so please check back here frequently to see the newest additions.

Along with "The Florida Project," Greta Gerwig's movie represents a new era of "forced coming-of-age stories" that speak to our troubled times. The Friday Cover. The Friday Cover is POLITICO Magazine's email of the week's best, delivered to your inbox every Friday morning.

Leslie Berlin | Historian of Silicon Valley