The following is an exert from my upcoming book, “Clueless”:
The music industry in America was a factor in exacerbating the anti-authoritarian transformation. When “Rock Around the Clock” was released in 1954, the song was not considered of any importance. However, when it was coupled with the film,”Blackboard Jungle,” in March 1955, about the looming peril of juvenile delinquency in the nation’s schools, it became an instant hit. Many teenage moviegoers danced in theater aisles to “Rock Around the Clock.” The song marked the beginning of a new genre of music that championed teenage rebellion against parents and other authority figures.
The young peoples’ emotions were commercially exploited by the entertainment industry and marketed to them for huge profits. In sixty years, popular music and television shows catering to young people have developed into a multi-billion dollar industry.
Siding with teens in their struggle against their parents and teachers may be good for business but it is highly destructive to the emotional lives of young people. The entertainment industry continues to exploit and excite the senses of these people beyond their natural tolerance level and by so doing increases their level of cluelessness to what is happening around them. This over-excitation further destabilizes what is left of authoritarian social armor and weakens the structure and guidelines contained in traditional social institutions like the family.