8 reasons why we don’t want to be called a hipster
We are all hipsters. 8 reasons why we don’t want to be called a hipster
1: Narrow bands of social identification
Maybe its just me – I am, after all reasonably judgemental – but it seems we all fit within narrow bands of social identification – when I say we, I mean the middle class, inner city type, in our late teens to mid thirties.
2: Mass grouping of identity
There seemingly used to be a greater spectrum of social colours, and maybe there still is, but the descriptive vocabulary we use has been limited to an over simplification, a mass grouping of identify, to the point where one needs to ask ‘what the fuck is a hipster?’
3: The commodification of hipsterdom
When was the last time someone used hipster as a positive adjective, except a marketing department targeting their new ‘demo’. Now, reality TV shows are replacing the obligatory gays and foreign ethnicities for hipsters – It’s like the target audience for a hipster is EVERYONE under the age of 40: the commodification of hipsterdom is well underway.
4: Hipster hierarchy
If we believe the Cambridge dictionary’s description, a hipster is “someone who is very influenced by the most recent ideas and fashions.” This is a purest description that I do not believe relates to most people considered to be hipsters. As hipsters are followers of the few that define these “new ideas and fashions”, which means there must be a hipster hierarchy, with possibly a centralised collective of hipsters lead by the ultimate hipster (a hipster tsar) that then disseminates their hipsterism to the world at large, maybe they are located in Williamsburg, NY.
5: Paradox of individuality
Sure we are individuals inwardly, what we show to the world is something different; how we dress, how we talk and what we talk about, all shape us into being socially categorised. And all of our social evolution has brought us to the hipster apocalypse. Where hipster is a omnipresent adjective, fuck, its even a verb.
6: External judgement
So, if you wear the right clothes, drink in the right bars, talk like you care about topics that you don’t really give a shit about, and most importantly think all of which makes you an individual. Hipster is a label that is for you.
No one wants to be pigeonholed, especially someone that is trying to be an individual, yet we are sold on an idea of individuality through mass consumption of the same shit everyone else buys. Who wants to be called a hipster? It’s a label with negative connotations.
Whether or not you give a damn about how you are labelled, the reality is we are becoming more and more pigeonholed to a point of social homogeneity, where this oneness is shaping an expectation of not only how we should dress, eat, drink, and talk, but of who we actually are.
Why hipsters? Through discussing social identity ad nauseam, hipsters are the first to come up; they are the pointy end of the labelling stick. So easy is it to identify a hipster, only sighting their dress sense one can come to a conclusion. But why…? Why do I give a shit enough to write this? Why do you care to read this? Because we are obsessed with labels, ways to identify and relate, and ways to belong. Through this mass grouping of identity, we have a belonging, to a world filled with hipsters.
James Knox is the Editor-in-Chief of FLINT, based in Perth, Australia.