A New Kind of Party Animal by Michele Mitchell
How the Young Are Tearing Up the American Political Landscape

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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.

About Michele Mitchell

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A political anchor and senior political correspondent for CNN Headline News, Michele Mitchell hosts the daily show In the Loop, which offers a young, fresh perspective on politics. Formerly an editorial writer for The New York Times and The Washington Post, as well as a commentator on NPR’s All Things Considered, she began her career on Capitol Hill. She lives in Brooklyn, New York.
Published July 2, 1998 by Simon & Schuster. 224 pages
Genres: Political & Social Sciences, Parenting & Relationships, Education & Reference. Non-fiction

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in her numerous case studies of young people who have volunteered to clean up cities, help the homeless, and save the earth, she doesn—t quite distinguish her players from activists of the past (and in any event many of her case studies look to boomer idols like Bobby Kennedy for their role models).

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For a truly honest look at Michele Mitchell's generation, try instead Peter Sacks' outstanding book, "Generation X Goes to College" (Open Court Press: 1996).

Jun 05 1998 | Read Full Review of A New Kind of Party Animal: H...

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