Miranda Sawyer

Miranda Sawyer

The Observer Lecture 2015: Fear of Forty – How Generation X is Coping (or not) with Middle Age

May/
Thu 14 May 2015

Miranda Sawyer

The Observer Lecture 2015: Fear of Forty – How Generation X is Coping (or not) with Middle Age

Miranda Sawyer
Thu 14 May 2015,

Some time between the ages of 40 and 50, you pass your life’s halfway point. For those who believe in youth culture, who were part of the 90’s rush that transformed Britain into an open-minded, hedonistic, artistic centre, this is more than a shock. It’s unthinkable. Middle age is for someone else, whether that’s Jeremy Clarkson or Victoria Wood.

And so, midlife crisis is a cliché that’s changing. Instead of an open-top sports car, 40-somethings are buying top-of-the-range bikes. Rather than settling down into family life, mid-lifers are suddenly quitting their jobs, or running triathlons, or discovering the recreational joys of Ibiza. Anything to quash that nightmare thought: I’ve done this all wrong and it’s too late to change.

What does this new midlife crisis mean, not only for their future, but for the future of the still-youth-obsessed UK? Award-winning Observer writer Miranda Sawyer takes a funny, insightful look at this tricky time of life, and sees that although some are equipped to sail (or jog) through this generational shift, others are struggling to cope as their youthful passions fail to survive the trials of full-blown adulthood.

Yvonne Roberts, Observer, will introduce and chair the event.

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