The New York TimesThe New York Times

When did 'wholesome' become a Gen Z compliment?

By Sadiba Hasan

15 May 2023 · 3 min read

Editor's Note

“Wholesome” is a word that evokes a specific reaction for many Gen Z-ers. The NYT explores how this word has become a generational value for many young people.

When Celeste Scott sees “things that are unscathed by the bad things in the world,” she says she can’t help but blurt out: “That’s so wholesome.”

Examples: Two people on opposite sides of a foggy window playing tic-tac-toe with their fingers. A monkey riding on a piglet’s back. And Pedro Pascal.

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