Life Timeline

For those born September 15, 1989.

Not your birthday? Find your timeline here.

Before you were born

You're one of the first people who's never lived in a world without Shark Week.

In August 2012, Ashley Fetters traced the history of cable television's longest-running programming event.


Around the time you were born, UTA Flight 772 exploded over the Sahara Desert, killing 170 people.

In January 2016, Shirley Phillips wrote about when pilots know that it's safer to stay on the ground.

Year 33

You were born in September of 1989. This year, The Atlantic celebrates its 160th birthday, making it 5 times as old as you.

The year you were born, Glenn Tinder wrote about the political meaning of Christianity.


Jason Redmond / AP

The 9/11 Attacks

At 12 years old, you were part of the generation most shaped by 9/11.

The conflicts and displacements touched off around the world by the attacks have been reverberating for the majority of your life. “This ‘war’ [on terrorism] will never be over,” wrote James Fallows, a few years after the towers fell.


Brad Rickerby / Reuters


In 2001, Daniel Radcliffe, who was born the same year as you, starred in the first film in the Harry Potter series.

In the July/August 2009 issue of the magazine, James Parker wrote about the challenges of turning Harry Potter into a film.



The teenage years

This is what Hollywood thought teenagers looked like the year you became one.

Crossroads was released in 2002.

Half a life ago

Your life can be divided into two halves: before and after American Idol.

In May 2015, Spencer Kornhaber wrote about how the show changed the music industry over time.

Coming of age

Around your 18th birthday, Japan's SELENE spacecraft was launched, making it the largest lunar project since the U.S. Apollo missions.

In October 2012, Megan Garber wrote about the theory that the moon was created by a major impact with the earth.


Goran Tomasevic / Reuters

The Arab Spring

When you turned 21, you witnessed the revolutionary fervor that transformed the Arab world in 2010, a movement led by your generation.

When 26-year-old Mohamed Bouazizi set himself on fire, he ignited a tinderbox of protests that continue to roil the Middle East, and kindled the beginnings of democracy in Tunisia.


By the time you turn 35, experts at the Pew Research Center warn that there will be no "surveillance-free spaces."

In December 2014, Adrienne LaFrance wrote about how the way we see privacy will change over the next decade.

History in the making

History is happening all around you, every day.

The Atlantic is here to help you process it, in stories like these: