Selfie By Ralph Waldo Emerson Analysis

1037 Words 5 Pages
Selfie, a photograph that one has taken of oneself, typically one taken with a smartphone and shared via social media. The youth of contemporary America have a social life that revolves around Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Tumblr, YouTube or any virtual community people can share and exchange information on. Ralph Waldo Emerson, unlike the current 21st century American youth, celebrated the independent individual and scorned self-centered assertions and immature narcissism in his memorable essay “Self-Reliance”. Emerson would condemn the “selfie” generation as the best way to express one’s identity, one’s true self and its narcissistic ideals. The term “selfie” is an accurate portrayal of the contemporary American social youth. With an increase …show more content…
Yourself or other people? By taking a selfie and gaining lots of likes, retweets or shares, you feel good because people like a certain picture of your face. This doesn’t mean that they like you, it just merely means that a certain picture of your “kissy face” got a good response from the audience you are presenting it to. That selfie isn’t a representation of one’s true self, it is a representation of one’s face. Emerson defines true self as trusting your heart, your choices, your decisions, your actions and your beliefs, and keeping individual integrity in the roar of social opinion. A person’s true self doesn’t rely on that person’s appearance, status, or popularity. Current youth use social media to determine their true self, believing that what society thinks of them is the only definition of them. But a person is their true self only in the solitude of their mind. While alone in the void of your mind, you are clearly able to see your true self: the way you perceive things good and bad, how you act and how you feel. “These are the voices which we hear in solitude, but they grow faint and inaudible as we enter the world. Society everywhere is in conspiracy against the manhood of every one of its members.” In the privacy of our minds, we “hear” the truth about ourselves, but this truth becomes more and more inaudible as the voices of society grow to a roar. Social media sets a standard for everyone involved or uninvolved with it. This much control to one standard, cripples people and takes away the true definition of a true

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