How to Live Without Irony –

Thanks to Andrew J. Taggart for pointing out this entry to the Stone blog at

A good read. Not sure I agree with the whole premise. In my view, while Millenials do  present a lot of irony (at least in their hipster variation), the irony itself is ironic. I suppose that can be seen as too Meta, but it should be connected with the likes of Socrates or Diogenes. Gen Yers in their self-cancelling ironic irony step out of the shadow of the Gen-Xers (i.e. the author below) who are entirely unironic in their irony.

So I agree with the author that it is easy enough to dust off the cobwebs of irony, but it is what needs to be done by late Boomers and Xers more so than Millenials.

He is an easy target for mockery. However, scoffing at the hipster is only a diluted form of his own affliction. He is merely a symptom and the most extreme manifestation of ironic living. For many Americans born in the 1980s and 1990s — members of Generation Y, or Millennials — particularly middle-class Caucasians, irony is the primary mode with which daily life is dealt. One need only dwell in public space, virtual or concrete, to see how pervasive this phenomenon has become. Advertising, politics, fashion, television: almost every category of contemporary reality exhibits this will to irony.

via How to Live Without Irony –


  1. the part that stuck out to me in particularly was the part about social capital. I feel like this can be expanded into something about social choice and how to structure society especially now with internet. Perhaps we shouldn’t commdify personal interaction, but it seems that is what is or has been done through our isolation (if we really are becoming more isolated, I’m still skeptical that this might just be rose colored glasses of yester years).

    They also mention “risk”, which is also a hot-button world in finance and economics. Psychology says that humans are a risk averse creature, which stems from evoulution. The human that isn’t risky survives; that being said the human that is risky and succeeds is able to aquire something that the safe person has cheated themselves of. I’d be curious to see how irony waxes and wanes throughout each generation similar to the stock market based on how safe a person feels in society; i.e the safer they feel the less ironic they feel they need to be, which could then create a culture of sincerity

    1. I am most pleased to see how much you are learning from your internship. Risk, adventure, entrepreneurship… all about taking a leap. I really see your generation ready to take a leap. If more of you can ally with older folks who are also willing to take a leap of faith and explore some innovative channels, a great deal could change for the better.

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