09 July, 2011

Opinion on Gerard Boyce talk at think Fest

Gerard Boyce, an economist student doing his doctrine at the University of Kwa-Zulu Natal gave a presentation this morning in Eden Grove, on the topic of Youth attitudes in regards to SA identity, democracy, life satisfaction. He used a qualitative method for his study. His presentation also showed that youth attitudes are related to perception of life satisfaction.

His study showed that the youth’s attitudes towards voting were not huge, that the youth were disinterested when it came to those matters. I believe the apathy which the youth have towards voting is because we feel no one takes us seriously but this does not mean they will not vote although this may not be the truth for most.

Young people are a youth in crisis! I believe the youth are in crisis in terms of how we identify with who we are in relation to the older people.

His study used the categories of African, Colored, Indian and White. My question is, how do we define African? Anyone could have identified themselves as African, especially the youth.

In his presentation I noted that national pride, amongst our youth is quite high amongst the youth. Could this be due the recent events that have taken place in S.A.? I think events like the 2010 Soccer World Cup can be the reason it is high, although the voting is low it shows that the youth believe in our country and what it can be.

The study showed young people have more great expectations about the future and are more hopeful. This for me is a great link up to the national pride which was touched on. With that said the youth are hopeful because and have great expectations due to the fact that although there has been suffering endured in the past so with time we hope it will get better.

The qualitative study he used was not appropriate in regards to its agenda. It was a study about the youth but it felt like it was without the youth’s true opinions. Forums and discussions would have helped his study/findings.

In my opinion the youth are misunderstood and there are very few individuals to partake or engage with the youth, many things are based on assumptions.

By Nokwazi Khumalo

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