Definition of lost generation in English:

lost generation


  • 1The generation reaching maturity during and just after the First World War, a high proportion of whose men were killed during those years.

    • ‘It will augment the literature units in the secondary curriculum that explore the twenties as a study of the lost generation or the American dream.’
    • ‘Nine million men, from all sides, lost their lives, and they often are referred to as ‘the lost generation.’’
    • ‘The stage is the designer's evocation of a World War I blue remembered battlefield, peopled by a ghostly lost generation in sad tin hats and mouldy cloth, their women anonymous wraiths in caps and shrouds.’
    • ‘The Age of Anxiety, the age of the lost generation, was also an age in which modern Fascism and Totalitarianism made their appearance on the historical stage.’
    • ‘She made the comment about ‘the lost generation,’ which became the catch phrase used to describe the post World War I characters of The Sun Also Rises.’
    1. 1.1An unfulfilled generation coming to maturity during a period of instability.
      • ‘UNICEF predicts that due to its grave debt burden the country will sustain a lost generation, a weak generation resulting from lack of education and ill health.’
      • ‘But the new lost generation had also witnessed the irrationality and terror of fascism, the burial of the old order and the nightmare world of alienated man.’
      • ‘Without a concerted effort at education and concrete action, these children are the lost generation.’
      • ‘There's a lost generation of youth who had spent their childhood fighting and killing others.’
      • ‘He wanted to bring justice to this lost generation, and also to bring hope for the survivors in this world.’
      • ‘The voice is powerful, the melodies wonderful and the songs anthems for a lost generation.’
      • ‘But a number are genuinely interested in politics in a serious manner - and these people I feel particular sorrow for, as they are potentially a lost generation.’
      • ‘I have seen our lost generation of young people, in hostels for the homeless or out on the streets.’
      • ‘In fact, we have proved that they are not a lost generation.’
      • ‘There's talk of a lost generation as children drop out of school.’
      • ‘More frightening is the future of a lost generation of our nation's youth.’
      • ‘His characters aren't quite a lost generation, but they are frequently at a loss trying to cope with the myriad forms of violence that have changed their world and how they view it.’
      • ‘The one thing that ties this young, lost generation together is the hope for a lasting, stable, broad-based government that represents all of the country's many tribes and ethnic groups.’
      • ‘Along with the stolen generations, does Australia have a lost generation?’
      • ‘They were a lost generation, and a living reminder to others of what war really meant.’


Phrase applied by Gertrude Stein to disillusioned young American writers, such as Ernest Hemingway, Scott Fitzgerald, and Ezra Pound, who went to live in Paris in the 1920s.