Is decadeology allowed on Straight Dope?

Moderator Action

Since this is a question about what is and isn’t allowed here, let’s move it to ATMB (from GQ).

What is decadeology?

Decadeology as I understand it is just the idea that culture tends to change around every decade or so, so you’ve got the culture of the 50s, the 60s, the 70s, the 80s, the 90s, the millennials, etc.

If this isn’t what the OP is talking about then I think they need to clarify. It’s also a pretty broad topic. Maybe the OP needs to narrow it down as to what they have in mind.

I don’t see any reason why anything involving this topic would be forbidden here, but maybe the OP means something other than what I am thinking about.

Okay. So everyone looks at their calendar, sees a zero at the end of the year, and then collectively changes “the culture” in one big coordinated effort.


Well, there have been stupider topics here, so why not?

If this indeed is the idea of “decadeology,” then whoever starts a thread needs to understand that saying “the 60s,” “the 70s,” etc., is just a convenient way to refer to a general period of time. The early part of the 60s was culturally very different from the later part. When people say “the culture of the 60s” they’re actually thinking of one particular cultural point, and just assuming everyone understands which one they mean, (and often they’re talking about things that continued into the 70s).

It’s sloppy, superficial cultural and historical discourse that people can get away with because it’s repeated so much that no one realizes the terms are meaningless.

Since you started this thread about the 1960s, and it was allowed, I don’t know why you would think it wasn’t.

Unless you are asking about something different.

From the internet:

Are you asking because the first reply to your previous thread on the 1960’s was “Reported”? If so, that reply was because you opened that thread in General Questions and, as there’s no factual answer to the question, it was better suited for IMHO. Just like this thread didn’t belong in GQ either.

And this sort of thing can be addressed in the thread. I don’t see an issue with it.

Walken After Midnight’s link indicates that the problem is that it leads to too many similar threads. If you try to do that here we’re just going to tell you to lump them all into one thread. I don’t see any need for a prohibition against these types of threads.

Decade discussions can be downright in tens.

That link is mighty peculiar, to my eyes. It looks like a ban, or at least discouragement, on discussion of history, on a message board that looks like it’s meant to be devoted to history.

That is what I was talking. And a lot websites are unfortunately biased against decadeology, namely and CityData.

I’ve saw that before and personally I think it’s bullshit.

Take two questions.

What did people in 1963 think about the 1950s?

What did people in 1964 think about the 1950s?

How different are the answers?

I think in both years people knew that, in actuality, the 50s were indeed over, and though there could of been some 50s hangover earlier before, they still knew it was actually the 60s.

Well, we have tons of threads like “name a song with an A” which gets another thread “name a song with B” etc, etc.

More importantly, what do people in 2016 think people in 1963 thought about the 1950s.

I agree that such a ban is bullshit, but I don’t know why people think a whole span of 10 years is somehow culturally compact and integrated in one particular way. It’s just misleading to try to characterize such a length of time, (particularly in dynamic nations like the U.S.), as culturally singular or unitary.

When you refer to things like “the culture of the 60s” all you’re really doing is myth-making.

When relocating a thread, including the original location (from GQ) is a great idea.


Why on Earth would decadeology be a thing on CityData at all? Color me mystified.

If there’s a debate involved, by all means go get 'em in Great Debates. I see no objections. We’ve certainly had odder things under debate. I’d be prepared to face some headwinds, were I you, however.