Baby Boom/Talk

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Is there much widespread agreement on what the Baby Boom years are? I have three siblings born before 1965, but I never thought of them as Boomers.

I've always thought of "boomers" as those who remember or were at least greatly influenced by the Kennedy presidency. I was born under Kennedy, but far too late to remember him as president (or even Johnson for that matter), so I never considered myself a "boomer". My older sister, maybe (b. 1957), and certainly my uncles born in the fifties. --LDC

Who coined the phrase?

I would take issue with the claim that the reason that they are influential right now is that they are in great numbers. It's at least as plausible to think they're influential because they're in the prime of life. --LMS


Most definitions of the baby boom that I've seen describe it in demographic terms rather than in terms of some sort of shared generational identity. And most of those definitions seem to define the end of the American baby boom as beign 1964. However, I ran across an author some 10 or 15 or so years ago who argued that the generation that we think of as "boomers" probably more correctly can be defined as running from about 1940 to 1960. (This author, I believe, coined the term "thirteeners" for Generation X, because they were the 13th generation in the United States).

Consider, for example, that the Beatles and Janis Joplin were all born during WWII, not after it, and most people born in 1964 probably don't have much of a boomer identity. That, of course, assumes that we define that generation according to some other criterion than just a statistical bulge in the United States (and how do other countries define that generation? In Denmark, they define the generation more in political terms, and call it the 68ers, because 1968 was the sort of pinnacle of the political activism that frequently characterized that generation).

As for how one might want incorporate all of this into an article on Baby Boomers, I don't really know.