Two Generations, Two Social Systems

Sunday, 10 July 2016: 10:45
Location: Hörsaal 32 (Main Building)
Oral Presentation
Eugenio GUZMAN, Universidad del Desarrollo, Chile
Miguel Angel Angel FERNANDEZ, Universidad del Desarrollo, Chile
The changes in values and attitudes, particularly among young people is a phenomenon widely studied, but not from the perspective of emerging democracies after periods or authoritarian dictatorships, as is the case of Chile. This raises questions about the differences between the generations socialized during the authoritarian period (1973-1989) and later (1990-2015). Transitioning from a nondemocratic to a democratic society in itself should have an impact in youth culture, since it involves the passage from a system of tight control of media and scarce political and civil freedoms to one entirely different.  We compare the two generations taking over two fundamental questions: firstly, what is the magnitude of change and on what attitudinal and behavioral dimensions it occurs. The second question regards to the timing and pace of the rupture or generational change.

 The research involves the quantification of changes in socio-cultural values (abortion, divorce, gay marriage, drug use, etc.) and other dimensions (political-ideological identification, political participation and interpersonal trust and institutions) and an historical and cultural explanation of such evolution.  At the same time, we evaluate how in the process of opening to the world, the values of young Chileans has been assimilating the Latin American and global trends. 

 To make these evaluations we use data from six chilean “National Surveys Youth” (comparable among each other) gathered between 1999 and 2013 for the 18-29 years group. This includes groups socialized in authoritarian and democratic periods. To contextualize, the results are compared with these of mature democracies (Europe, North America and Oceania), and the Latin American neighborhood, drawn from the World Values Survey.

Preliminary analyses indicate that the gap between values and internal youth cultures and the world are shortened, and the changing attitudes of young Chileans are increasingly associated to global trends.