By Matt Muñoz
Tight jeans, thick-rimmed glasses, “fixie” at the ready, the hipster has moved out of the fringe and into the mainstream.
There’s a chance you may know a hipster or two, not that they would admit it. While it is possible this denial is part of the hipster image, it is easy to see why not many are quick to associate themselves with the label when described as “narcissistic” and “pompous” by some K students.
Jon Posner K’12 says he is often called a hipster but did not welcome the title, describing hipsters as “people concerned with aesthetics without substance.”
“I wear a lot of tight clothes, I enjoy American Apparel, I don’t know,” said Posner. “People are stupid, whatever.”
Emily Katz K’14 had similar sentiments about being labeled a hipster.
“It’s a subject I always try to avoid,” said Katz. “I just do my thing, you know, I’m just trying to live my life.”
Some of the characteristics of a hipster they noted were the tight clothes, aloof attitude, and obscure taste in music.
Chelsey Shannon K’14 felt that there was an intellectual aspect to the hipster, as well.
“I think there’s usually an attempt at intellectualism if not actual intellectualism,” said Shannon, taking a more positive view of the hipster.
A 2009 Time Magazine article by Dan Fletcher referenced Robert Lanham’s The Hipster Handbook in saying that you are a hipster if: “You graduated from a liberal arts school whose football team hasn’t won a game since the Reagan Administration” and “You have one Republican friend who you always describe as your ‘one Republican friend.’”
Comparisons to certain liberal arts colleges you may be familiar with aside, there was a general consensus that there were a lot of people at K who could be categorized as a hipster. There was less unity of opinion in noting where the hipster came from.
Shannon K’14 cited the punk movement as a possible source, while Posner K’12 thought the Jonas Brothers had something to do with hipster style moving into the mainstream. Even the emo kid of the 2000s has been called the hipster prototype, according to a Paste Magazine article by Kate Kiefer entitled “The Evolution of the Hipster.”
It seems the hipster is today’s manifestation of an ever-evolving subculture.
“I feel like there will always be nostalgia attached,” said Katz K’14. “In general, whenever things come to an end people see it in a positive light.”