Master of Arts (MA)
Faith E Mullen
Primary Subject Area
Mass Communications; Psychology, Social
Baby Boomers, generational communication, generational identity, Generation XY, social identity theory stereotypes
Du, Yuxiang, "Communication Disconnect: Generational Stereotypes between Generation X/Y and Baby Boomers in American and Chinese Organizational Communication" (2011). Masters Theses. 166.
This research explores organizational communication between Generation X/Y and the Baby Boomers within the American and Chinese groups using social identity theory. Twenty participants were interviewed about their opinions on this issue. Thematic analysis was used to examine themes in the responses. The themes were organized into six categories: outlining Generation X/Y, outlining Baby Boomers, generational communication, generational stereotypes, cultural influences, and favorable solutions. Two referent elements were used through the whole discussion, social identity and cultural characteristics. The study revealed a strong social identity with all the four generational groups, difficulties in communication and stereotypes because of the identities. Collectivistic elements such as respect, care, harmony, conflict avoidance were spotted from the responses of the Chinese participants. It was suspected that despite Chinese old generation (age 45-60) and Chinese young generation (age 18-28) had their own generational identities, they shared a superordinate cultural identity.