The 2010s: A Decade in Reflection

Darcy Harrison, Writer

As the new year rolls around, it is easy to look back and reflect on all of the events that occurred during the prime of our youth. Whether it was because of a movie, an album, or a political shift, this decade was one that will resonate with us for the rest of our lives.

The 2010s were an immensely important age in film. In blockbuster productions, the Marvel Cinematic Universe experienced wild amounts of success with movies such as Infinity War and Endgame. The Star Wars franchise reignited excitement many old fans had. Martin Scorsese rolled out movies such as Hugo, Rolling Thunder Revue, and The Irishman. In independent film, Wes Anderson’s Moonrise KingdomGrand Budapest Hotel, and Isle of Dogs all became cult favorites. Spike Lee astounded audiences with Blackkklansman, and new arrivals to the industry such as Boots Riley made bold political statements with Sorry To Bother You. 

 BlacKKKlansman (2018) dir. Spike Lee

Music became more widespread and accessible with streaming services like Spotify, Apple Music, and Soundcloud. Mainstream musicians such as Ariana Grande released Thank U, Next and Sweetener. Stars like Luke Combs and Carrie Underwood reigned the country world. Rapper Kendrick Lamar made musical history with Good Kid, M.A.A.D City, To Pimp a Butterfly, and DAMN. Travis “La Flame” Scott attracted a huge crowd with Astroworld. In alternative music, Frank Ocean created one of, if not the best, album of decade with Blonde. Indie rock came into its own with musicians such as Car Seat Headrest, Kurt Vile, Courtney Barnett, and Cage the Elephant.

Politically, the world experienced many firsts this decade. Our first African-American President was elected a second term. There was a first female democratic presidential nominee. The most diverse midterm elections occurred. Students across the world united to protest climate change and gun laws. The entertainment industry was challenged with the #MeToo movement against sexual assault. Edward Snowden informed the people of global surveillance systems. Gay marriage was legalized nationwide. Syria, Lebanon, and Yemen all experienced major protests. Global disasters such as hurricanes, earthquakes, and wildfires struck in both developed and underdeveloped nations.

In literature, novels like Exit West by Moshin Hamid and The Sellout by Paul Beatty became loved pieces by critics and audiences alike. Fan favorites such as Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn and Go Set a Watchman by Harper Lee were read by the masses.  Young adult books such as A Night Divided by Jennifer Nielsen and The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas became teen’s first picks.

It is hard to imagine that all of these events and advancements occurred all in the span of ten years. This decade means a lot to us because most of us spent our teen years during this time. However, the rapid change that happened this decade is sure to continue its way, and we can begin to look forward to the 2020s.