A New Kind of Party Animal: How the Young are Tearing Up the American Political Landscape

Front Cover
Simon & Schuster, 1998 - Social Science - 224 pages
0 Reviews
In this provocative and timely first book, twenty-seven-year-old political correspondent Michele Mitchell explores how young people, contrary to popular opinion, are redefining politics.It is the multimillion-dollar question asked by marketing strategists: Who are these people? It is the exasperation of political pundits: Where are they coming from? And, it is the anxiety of older Americans: Where will they lead us? Now, for the first time, these new political party animals are convincingly portrayed. It's impossible to pigeonhole an eighty million-strong group that stretches from trust fund babies to welfare kids, from Daughters of the American Revolution to descendants of slaves and new immigrants, from Berkeley to the Bible Belt, from those raised by both parents to children whose parents are single or divorced. This is a generation in which many grew up as latchkey kids with television as a source of comfort, and a group that says "show me" when offered a promise because of its exposure to marketing and advertising. And because of their independence, young people do not unconditionally offer up loyalty. Plus, they are building their own communities and connecting through the technologies they are creating. Mitchell explores six factors that not only set this generation apart, but are transforming the political world: lack of party affiliation, diverse interest in a range of issues, grassroots-based approaches to problem-solving, lack of gender bias, skepticism of marketing and advertising, and computer savvy. In prose that is entertaining, lively, and fresh, we glimpse the lives of such up-and-comers as Jerry Morrison, in his run for office in Chicago; Kim Alexander of Sacramento, a pioneer in using the Internet to affect politics; Quillie Coath Jr. and Charles McKinney of Durham, North Carolina, propelled into community activism as a means of improving their neighborhoods; and Lynn Marquis, Robert George, and Bob Meagher, who are making changes at ground zero in Washington, D.C. Insightful, succinct, and engaging, "A New Kind of Party Animal" is our road map to understanding the future of American society and politics.

From inside the book

What people are saying - Write a review

A NEW KIND OF PARTY ANIMAL: How the Young Are Tearing Up the American Political Landscape

User Review  - Jane Doe - Kirkus

Watch out, baby boomers: the 18-to-35-year-old cohort is about to seize power, warns Mitchell. Call them Gen-Xers or the 13th Generation, but don—t, in the manner of so many older types, call them ... Read full review

A new kind of party animal: how the young are tearing up the American political landscape

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

Mitchell, a former Capitol Hill communications director and former NPR political correspondent, believes that the media stereotype of the politically indifferent Generation X age group is inaccurate ... Read full review


Party Out of Bounds
Open Commitment

5 other sections not shown

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

References to this book

About the author (1998)

Michele Mitchell a former communications director on Capitol Hill, is the youngest person to have written for the New York Times editorial page. She covered the 1996 election for National Public Radio's "All Things Considered" and is a fellow at the Public Forum Institute. She lives in New York City and Washington, D.C.

Bibliographic information