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Rosemary’s Baby

Posted on June 13, 2016

Rosemary’s Generation

Dawn

Born in the late 1960s, I am—for better or worse—one of Rosemary’s Generation. Historian Steven Mintz describes a “sea change” in behavior and attitudes in the youth of the 60s and 70s: “their parents’ concern for their well-being became translated into their own search for personal fulfillment.” Often characterized as “idealistic and rebellious,” 60s youth were also “uniquely self-absorbed, materialistic, and narcissistic.”[i]

No single cultural product can define a generation, but Roman Polanski’s film, Rosemary Baby, released on June 12, 1968, certainly embodies something of 60s youth—as did, I would add, George A. Romero’s Night of the Living Dead (also 1968) and Richard Donner’s The Omen (1976).

Headlines of the 60s worried about spoiled, defiant children and, as Mintz puts it about “parents who let their offspring bully them.” A 1960 issue of Newsweek asked “Are We Trapped in a Child-Centered World?” Other articles posed the questions “Is the Younger Generation Soft and Spoiled?” and “Child Monarchy in America?”[ii] Read more

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