How could teenagers have been invented? And, no doubt, some uncharitable people might even ask ‘why’.
Uncouth Youth. Obviously, no one used to miss out the years between 13 and 19. However, until the 1950s the term ‘teenagers’ had never been used, musician Bill Haley is supposed to have been the first person to use the word in 1952. Before that they were ‘young adults’ or ‘youths’ and were expected to behave pretty much as adults did.
The Second World War had been rather miserable, for obvious reasons, but during the 1950s rationing ended and everyone had a bit more spare cash. New films, TV shows and especially music appealed to the young, who began to create their own style, quite different from grown-ups’.
For the first time, young people had money to spend on luxuries, and they used it to make themselves as different as possible from their parents. They listened to the new ‘rock and roll’ music, absolutely shocking, as you’ll probably agree, and they dressed in clothes that their mums and dads definitely wouldn’t be wearing.
One popular teenage fashion, the ‘Teds’ look, made teenagers stand out rather: boys wore drainpipe trousers, long brightly colored jackets, greasy hair with a huge quiff at the front and chunky sideburns. Teenage fashions have changed a bit since then.
Teddy boys: The 1950s’ Teds surprisingly took their inspiration from upper-class men of 50 years before, the Edwardians. Hence the name (Ted is short for Edward). By the 1960s, many Teds, especially those with motorbikes, became Rockers.
When people grow up they often forget what it’s like to be a teenager, even when they have children of their own. Don’t make the same mistake!
How do you feel about your appearance?
How do you feel about your school?
How do you feel about your friends?
How do you feel about the state of the country?
How do you feel about the state of the world?
How do you feel about your future?
What makes you angry?
What makes you happy?
Describe your general sense of well being
What advice have you got for your future self?