COLUMN: We are the generation of throwbacks


Ethan Schobernd, Columnist

I remember having a conversation with one of my professors a few weeks ago. We were discussing the music taste of Generation Z. My teacher had observed that our generation’s taste in music has shifted towards having a greater appreciation for the classics compared to the foregoing generations.  

For example: Frank Sinatra, Aretha Franklin, Elvis Presley, etc. are legendary singers that I find are more popular nowadays compared to the 90s.  

I couldn’t agree more; my generation (Gen Z) has such a different viewpoint and appreciation for the past. However, I think my generation’s perspective goes beyond music taste. This trend also addresses fashion, décor, hobbies, and so much more.  

Everybody who is involved in social media culture, will know that there are “sides” of TikTok, such as: “Art TikTok”, “Sports TikTok”, “Music TikTok”, and “Plant TikTok”. There are thousands of different “sides” people are on, because once a video is liked on the platform, there is an algorithm that will add more videos that is similar to the content.  

I happen to be on a side of TikTok where people my age are singing to Ella Fitzgerald or wearing old suits and dresses from the 1900s. I have discovered that there are countless numbers of people in my generation who share the exact same appreciation for the many facets the previous generations have to give. I will even spot people around campus wearing clothes that were once a trend in the 90s and early 2000s.  

What is even more interesting, is that Generation Z has both an appreciation for the past and the present and we try to tie them together. However, some of these trends were better than others. For example is the mullet. I will not apologize for stating that the mullet should have never returned. My father used to have one in the 80s and thankfully he never had it again. I know some people appreciate it and I can understand that, but in all sincerity, I see no appeal to it whatsoever. The reciprocal to the mullet, in my opinion, is the iconic afro look. When I say I love a big afro, I mean it. I believe that those who bear an afro are iconic and deserve to be complemented daily.  

Of course, we all have a right to our own opinions and deserve to like or dislike whatever we want. Some friends I know had “old-timey” music and only like to listen to today’s hits, which is great. But compared to the people that were my age when I was little, Generation Z cherishes the past so much more and we aren’t afraid to show it either.  

As for me, I wear a fedora that most of my friends recognize. It’s hip, different, and I only wear it on special days. We all have our own way of showing who we are, but I must applaud my generation for showing an astounding amount of diversity and recognition for the throwbacks. 

Ethan Schobernd is a sophomore journalism major. He can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]