Hipsters: Then and Now

 

The Hipsters

Past and Present … Presently ….

Here is a bit of a History Lesson of where this ‘Hipster’ Fashion and culture has come from … and SHOCKINGLY, it comes from the Black Community … (that is sarcasm)

Birth of ….


1940s-1950s

“Hipster” derives from the slang “hip” or “hep,” which are derived from the earlier slang “hop” for opium. The first dictionary to list the word is the short glossary “For Characters Who Don’t Dig Jive Talk,” which was included with Harry Gibson’s 1944 album, Boogie Woogie In Blue. The entry for “hipsters” defined it as “characters who like hot jazz.” The 1959 book Jazz Scene by Eric Hobsbawm (using the pen name Francis Newton) describes hipsters using their own language, “jive-talk or hipster-talk,” he writes “is an argot or cant designed to set the group apart from outsiders.” Hipster was also used in a different context at about the same time by Jack Kerouac in describing his vision of the Beat Generation. Along with Allen Ginsberg, Kerouac described 1940s hipsters “rising and roaming America,… bumming and hitchhiking everywhere… [as] characters of a special spirituality.”

 

Mutation of …


1990s and 2000s
In the late 1990s, the term started to be used in new, sometimes mutually exclusive ways. In some circles it became a blanket description for middle class and upper class young people associated with alternative culture, particularly alternative music, independent rock, alternative hip-hop, independent film and a lifestyle revolving around thrift store shopping, eating organic, locally grown, vegetarian, and/or vegan food, drinking local beer (or even brewing their own), listening to public radio, and riding fixed-gear bicycles.

In 2003 Robert Lanham’s satirical book The Hipster Handbook described hipsters as young people with “… mop-top haircuts, swinging retro pocketbooks, talking on cell phones, smoking European cigarettes,… strutting in platform shoes with a biography of Che Guevara sticking out of their bags.” Hipsters are considered apathetic, pretentious, and self-entitled by other, often marginalized sectors of society they live amongst, including previous generations of bohemian and/or “counter-culture” artists and thinkers as well as poor neighborhoods of color.

Gavin Mueller’s article “Hipster or Not?” for Stylus Magazine (2004) wrote that “… hipster lifestyle is reduced to a pose, a pretense” which involves”…”a hipster costume, worn to appear “cool”, a liberal arts education, and so on. He claims that the term “‘Hipster’ is far too vague and broad to have any semblance of essential meaning”.

 

Current … Hipster Rap

In 2008, Utne Reader magazine writer Jake Mohan described “hipster rap,” “as loosely defined by the Chicago Reader, consists of the most recent crop of MCs and DJs who flout conventional hip-hop fashions, eschewing baggy clothes and gold chains for tight jeans, big sunglasses, the occasional keffiyeh, and other trappings of the hipster lifestyle.” He notes that the “old-school hip-hop website Unkut, and Jersey City rapper Mazzi” have criticized mainstream rappers who they deem to be poseurs or “… fags for copping the metrosexual appearances of hipster fashion.” Prefix Mag writer Ethan Stanislawski argues that there are racial elements to the rise of hipster rap. He claims that there “…have been a slew of angry retorts to the rise of hipster rap,” which he says can be summed up as “white kids want the funky otherness of hip-hop… without all the scary black people.”

 

Comment:

I don’t mind the Hipster fashions for the women, but when the Hipster fashions for the men look like the same fashions for the women; then there is a problem – loosen up the jeans fellas.

Sources: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hipster_(1940s_subculture)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hipster_(contemporary_subculture)

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