Campus Trends: Finding Our Unique Voice

“Most people are other people. Their thoughts are someone else’s opinions, their lives a mimicry, their passions a quotation.”—Oscar Wilde.

Has our generation become too reliant on others’ words? Instant Messenger profiles and away messages are filled with song lyrics, quotes from popular culture, and ancient philosophers, including mine. I just bought a birthday card from the section of Hallmark labeled “pop culture.” The card quoted one of my favorite movies, Fried Green Tomatoes, so it was an easy buy. I worry that our expressions are really just a regurgitation of others’ thoughts.

Break up with a boyfriend? Quote Carrie from Sex and the City. Confused about love? Quote Meredith Grey from Grey’s Anatomy. Going out with friends? Go country with Kenny Chesney’s “It’s five o’clock somewhere” or reveal your hip-hop side with Jay-Z “Big Pimpin’.”

I give the episode writers and lyricists praise. Their words comfort me when I don’t know how to express myself. I just hope that while we value their songs, we also develop our own verses.

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