Dickman and Lonergan contrast on american youth

It should be known that in every text there is a message that is extremely vital. This is because it has the ability to portray information that needs to be known by its readers. Communication is considered being the most essential aspect of any text, whether it is in poems or plays. Some of the most common methods of portraying texts are through language, characterization, and tone, among others. The play by Lonergan and the poem by Dickman is a way through which communication takes place. The key themes that are present in Dickman’s and Lonergan’s poem and play respectively are the elements, which affect young people as they progress into adulthood. The latter includes; Sexual liaison, theft and drug use, among many others.

This paper seeks to give an analysis of the differences and similarities of the major themes in Lonergan’s and Dickman’s works.

Analysis of major themes in ‘This is our Youth’ and ‘All American poem’

Dickman and Lonergan seem to believe that in the United States, life is often difficult for the youth as they try and transit into adulthood. This is because they are faced with many challenges in their lives. It is often difficult for the youth to escape from the miserable lives that they are living due to peer pressure. This scenario is present in the play ‘Thus is our youth’ by Lonergan. The main character is Warren and his friend Ziegler who are teenagers and are just about to reach adulthood. They have left their homes in order to leave on their own, but have used different approaches (Lonergan, 2000. 24). Warren stole money amounting to fifteen thousand dollars from his father as an act of defiance. The stolen money is to be used by Warren as upkeep away from home. On the other hand, Dennis is lucky as his father has agreed to rent an apartment for him in New York, at the Upper West Side. Dennis and Warren encounter a lot of trouble as they live their lives, and it can all be blamed on the decisions that they have made. The road to adulthood has many barriers such as sex, drugs, and theft, which seem to affect the lives of Warren and Dennis. According to Dickman, the youth of American are faced with many problems, which they find extremely difficult to handle. They seem to lack proper guidance and in turn, engage in undesirable behavior that affects them once they attain adulthood (Dickman, 2008. 38).

Often, before one reaches adulthood, they experience many problems and this is despite the different backgrounds where they come. Most parents tend to ignore their children once they attain a certain age. Other times, it is considered mandatory that once teenagers are about to become adults, they should leave home. The lucky youth who come from affluent backgrounds are supported by their parents and this is not applicable to the poor youth. The future is determined by the actions, which they make. For example, the need by Warren and Dennis to engage in selling drugs had a likely negative outcome. The outcomes include being sent to jail or losing their lives as a result of engaging in deals that are not successful. Only the present situation seems to matter to the youth as engaging in sex, alcohol, and drugs are part of their desires. Maturation is an idea that needs to be instilled among the youth as it can affect their lives’ outcomes. Dickman is interested in matters related to human existence because it gives people an aim in life. Also, the American youth should know about these extremely key issues in order to ensure that they lead lives that are meaningful. Furthermore, parents, academic institutions, as well as the media, should always portray a positive image to the youth. People will always have a passion for things, which they cherish and love. This means that the youth will be infatuated and misinterpret it to mean love. Warren cherished his baseball cap and when Jessica attempted to have it, Warren felt disgusted towards her.

The issue concerning morality and values is indeed one that needs to be addressed urgently, especially because it concerns the youth. The latter are faced with an urge to identify themselves so that others can notice them. Identity is often associated with performing evil deeds, which might have serious repercussions. The need to attain a self-image makes the youth engage in acts of immorality, which undermines many American values. In Lonergan poem, Jessica and Dennis are aware of their nature and this is what affects their behavior. When the youth are associating with their peers, they tend to want to show off and be recognized by others. For example, Warren and Dennis started selling drugs in an attempt to make easy money and at the same time be known among their peers (Lonergan, 2000. 56). On the contrary, Dickman believes that the youth should make their own decisions and always be confident. In turn, it will be difficult for other youth to try and dishearten them and forge fake identities. By observing and following rules as well as being morally upright, the youth can effectively redeem themselves. Rebelling against authority should not be condoned as it can make them lose their morality.

Matters concerning sex have for a long time been extremely controversial, especially when it pertains to the youth. The latter seem to believe that sex is for pleasure and for fun, as well as satisfying bodily desires. Money is viewed as a means of obtaining sexual favors particularly when it is men who want sex form the other gender (Shelden. Et Al, 2003. 67). In Lonergan’s play, sex is extremely evident as it is a means of obtaining satisfaction. It was at the exquisite Plaza Hotel that Warren enticed young girls for purposes of obtaining sex. He spent the money he had stolen in order to have fun with girls and this can be described as being a lustful affair. The human body is not accorded the respect it deserves but is instead used for other purposes. The attention and devotion it deserves is something that has been long forgotten. This makes Dickson believe that the American youth are engaging in sex before they are ready or know about the consequences. A lot needs to be done to ensure that the negative aspects of engaging in underage sex are made known to the youth.

Dickman ensures that the life of the American youth is known, mostly in the sectors of personal matters, memories, as well as love matters. He believes that the United States is a country that is extremely broken and most especially it is the youth who are affected. He further believes that it is the nature of human beings to engage in acts that are not acceptable, especially when they are in their youth. According to him, this is a rite of passage, which the youths have to pass (Dickman, 2008. 49). More should be done for the youth of America as they are the ones who are the generation of the future. The effective use of humor in the ‘All American Poem’ has made it known that the youths have a chance of having a fulfilling future. This is because the youth will be aware of what it takes to escape from problems such as drugs and sex. On the other hand, Lonergan has made it clear that it is through peer pressure and family background that the youth is who they have become. A positive environment should be created for the youth, in order to make their future lives have a purpose and well as meaning.


In conclusion, the message being brought about by Dickman and Lonergan is that the youth should live meaningful lives. They should not engage in negative vices, which will affect them and other generations in the future. The American youth should be positive role models who can make something of themselves. From the given literature, is clearly evident that attaining adulthood is not an easy task, as along the youth still face many challenges. In turn, more should be done to make the transition process as smooth as possible.


                                      Work Cited

Lonergan, Kenneth. This is our Youth. New York: Overlook TP, 2000.Print.

Dickman, Mathew, All American Poem. New York: American Poetry Review, 2008.Print.

Shelden, Randall. Et Al. Youth Gangs in American Society (Contemporary Issues in Crime and Justice Series) New York: Wadsworth. 2003. Print.

Randall G. Shelden (Author)

Visit Amazon’s Randall G. Shelden Page

Find all the books, read about the author, and more.

See search results for this author

Are you an author? Learn about Author Central


Get Professional Assignment Help Cheaply

Buy Custom Essay

Are you busy and do not have time to handle your assignment? Are you scared that your paper will not make the grade? Do you have responsibilities that may hinder you from turning in your assignment on time? Are you tired and can barely handle your assignment? Are your grades inconsistent?

Whichever your reason is, it is valid! You can get professional academic help from our service at affordable rates. We have a team of professional academic writers who can handle all your assignments.

Why Choose Our Academic Writing Service?

  • Plagiarism free papers
  • Timely delivery
  • Any deadline
  • Skilled, Experienced Native English Writers
  • Subject-relevant academic writer
  • Adherence to paper instructions
  • Ability to tackle bulk assignments
  • Reasonable prices
  • 24/7 Customer Support
  • Get superb grades consistently

Online Academic Help With Different Subjects


Students barely have time to read. We got you! Have your literature essay or book review written without having the hassle of reading the book. You can get your literature paper custom-written for you by our literature specialists.


Do you struggle with finance? No need to torture yourself if finance is not your cup of tea. You can order your finance paper from our academic writing service and get 100% original work from competent finance experts.

Computer science

Computer science is a tough subject. Fortunately, our computer science experts are up to the match. No need to stress and have sleepless nights. Our academic writers will tackle all your computer science assignments and deliver them on time. Let us handle all your python, java, ruby, JavaScript, php , C+ assignments!


While psychology may be an interesting subject, you may lack sufficient time to handle your assignments. Don’t despair; by using our academic writing service, you can be assured of perfect grades. Moreover, your grades will be consistent.


Engineering is quite a demanding subject. Students face a lot of pressure and barely have enough time to do what they love to do. Our academic writing service got you covered! Our engineering specialists follow the paper instructions and ensure timely delivery of the paper.


In the nursing course, you may have difficulties with literature reviews, annotated bibliographies, critical essays, and other assignments. Our nursing assignment writers will offer you professional nursing paper help at low prices.


Truth be told, sociology papers can be quite exhausting. Our academic writing service relieves you of fatigue, pressure, and stress. You can relax and have peace of mind as our academic writers handle your sociology assignment.


We take pride in having some of the best business writers in the industry. Our business writers have a lot of experience in the field. They are reliable, and you can be assured of a high-grade paper. They are able to handle business papers of any subject, length, deadline, and difficulty!


We boast of having some of the most experienced statistics experts in the industry. Our statistics experts have diverse skills, expertise, and knowledge to handle any kind of assignment. They have access to all kinds of software to get your assignment done.


Writing a law essay may prove to be an insurmountable obstacle, especially when you need to know the peculiarities of the legislative framework. Take advantage of our top-notch law specialists and get superb grades and 100% satisfaction.

What discipline/subjects do you deal in?

We have highlighted some of the most popular subjects we handle above. Those are just a tip of the iceberg. We deal in all academic disciplines since our writers are as diverse. They have been drawn from across all disciplines, and orders are assigned to those writers believed to be the best in the field. In a nutshell, there is no task we cannot handle; all you need to do is place your order with us. As long as your instructions are clear, just trust we shall deliver irrespective of the discipline.

Are your writers competent enough to handle my paper?

Our essay writers are graduates with bachelor's, masters, Ph.D., and doctorate degrees in various subjects. The minimum requirement to be an essay writer with our essay writing service is to have a college degree. All our academic writers have a minimum of two years of academic writing. We have a stringent recruitment process to ensure that we get only the most competent essay writers in the industry. We also ensure that the writers are handsomely compensated for their value. The majority of our writers are native English speakers. As such, the fluency of language and grammar is impeccable.

What if I don’t like the paper?

There is a very low likelihood that you won’t like the paper.

Reasons being:

  • When assigning your order, we match the paper’s discipline with the writer’s field/specialization. Since all our writers are graduates, we match the paper’s subject with the field the writer studied. For instance, if it’s a nursing paper, only a nursing graduate and writer will handle it. Furthermore, all our writers have academic writing experience and top-notch research skills.
  • We have a quality assurance that reviews the paper before it gets to you. As such, we ensure that you get a paper that meets the required standard and will most definitely make the grade.

In the event that you don’t like your paper:

  • The writer will revise the paper up to your pleasing. You have unlimited revisions. You simply need to highlight what specifically you don’t like about the paper, and the writer will make the amendments. The paper will be revised until you are satisfied. Revisions are free of charge
  • We will have a different writer write the paper from scratch.
  • Last resort, if the above does not work, we will refund your money.

Will the professor find out I didn’t write the paper myself?

Not at all. All papers are written from scratch. There is no way your tutor or instructor will realize that you did not write the paper yourself. In fact, we recommend using our assignment help services for consistent results.

What if the paper is plagiarized?

We check all papers for plagiarism before we submit them. We use powerful plagiarism checking software such as SafeAssign, LopesWrite, and Turnitin. We also upload the plagiarism report so that you can review it. We understand that plagiarism is academic suicide. We would not take the risk of submitting plagiarized work and jeopardize your academic journey. Furthermore, we do not sell or use prewritten papers, and each paper is written from scratch.

When will I get my paper?

You determine when you get the paper by setting the deadline when placing the order. All papers are delivered within the deadline. We are well aware that we operate in a time-sensitive industry. As such, we have laid out strategies to ensure that the client receives the paper on time and they never miss the deadline. We understand that papers that are submitted late have some points deducted. We do not want you to miss any points due to late submission. We work on beating deadlines by huge margins in order to ensure that you have ample time to review the paper before you submit it.

Will anyone find out that I used your services?

We have a privacy and confidentiality policy that guides our work. We NEVER share any customer information with third parties. Noone will ever know that you used our assignment help services. It’s only between you and us. We are bound by our policies to protect the customer’s identity and information. All your information, such as your names, phone number, email, order information, and so on, are protected. We have robust security systems that ensure that your data is protected. Hacking our systems is close to impossible, and it has never happened.

How our Assignment  Help Service Works

1.      Place an order

You fill all the paper instructions in the order form. Make sure you include all the helpful materials so that our academic writers can deliver the perfect paper. It will also help to eliminate unnecessary revisions.

2.      Pay for the order

Proceed to pay for the paper so that it can be assigned to one of our expert academic writers. The paper subject is matched with the writer’s area of specialization.

3.      Track the progress

You communicate with the writer and know about the progress of the paper. The client can ask the writer for drafts of the paper. The client can upload extra material and include additional instructions from the lecturer. Receive a paper.

4.      Download the paper

The paper is sent to your email and uploaded to your personal account. You also get a plagiarism report attached to your paper.

smile and order essaysmile and order essay PLACE THIS ORDER OR A SIMILAR ORDER WITH US TODAY AND GET A PERFECT SCORE!!!

order custom essay paper