Baby Boomers (also known as Boomers) are the demographic cohort following the Silent Generation. There are varying timelines defining the start and the end of this cohort; demographers and researchers typically use birth years starting from the early- to mid-1940s and ending anywhere from 1960 to 1964. The term "baby boomer" is also used in a cultural context, so it is difficult to achieve broad consensus of a precise date definition. Different people, organizations, and scholars have varying opinions on who is a baby boomer, both chronologically and culturally. Ascribing universal attributes to any generation is tricky, and some believe it is invalid to make generalizations about individuals who happen to be born in the same timeframe. Still, many have attempted to discern in this group cultural similarities and historical impact, helping to popularize the designation "baby boomer." Baby boomers are associated with a rejection or redefinition of traditional values. Many commentators, however, have disputed the extent of that rejection, noting the widespread continuity of values with older and younger generations. In Europe and North America, boomers are widely associated with privilege, as many grew up in a time of widespread government subsidies in post-war housing and education, and increasing affluence. As a group, baby boomers were the wealthiest, most active, and most physically fit generation up to the era in which they arrived, and were amongst the first to grow up genuinely expecting the world to improve with time. They were also the generation that received peak levels of income; they could therefore reap the benefits of abundant levels of food, apparel, retirement programs, and sometimes even "midlife crisis" products.
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