What Causes Hipsters?

There is a general consensus out there that considers Hipsters to be repulsive, snobby, and outright insensitive. It is commonly accepted that a person doesn’t want to be called a Hipster. And I propose that if someone wants to be called a Hipster, that they are therefore not one. What I mean, is that Hipsters are not self-aware of their actions or fashion choices. If they were to be conscious of these factors, they would defy the whole definition of what is considered to be a Hipster, and rather ironically carry the title Hipster. If these terms are considered to be true, then an odd situation where a Hipster (oblivious to their Hipster title) would identify someone else as a Hipster.

Now, understanding what a Hipster is, is important to know what created such an odd modern culture. As the word suggests, the Hipster follows anything that is hip-that the general public considers to be “in”. Recent trends consist of the Man-Bun, Vinyls, indie bands, dreads, corn-rows, in addition to the facial hair culture. We like to think that Hipsters are their own culture-that they are separate from the rest of the world, but they are so intermingled within our culture that, without them, we wouldn’t have the current United States. I am not saying that we are dependent on Hipsters, but they have added commentary (whether intentional or not) on the main stream ideas of culture. This commentary has influenced the main stream to re-evaluate its current ideals and values.

It is important to note that all the trends mentioned above can be enjoyed by any person, and they aren’t necessarily considered a Hipster. For me, I enjoy vinyls and indie bands, but that does not instantly make me a Hipster. What makes a Hipster is a deeper and somewhat scary explanation. To be a Hipster, one must deny the origins of trends they participate in. I recognize the origins of vinyls and indie bands, while also paying tribute their origins. Without acknowledgment of these facts, then it is possible that I would be in the running to be a Hipster. With Corn-Rows, for example, they had been brought into the general public’s eye when Miley Cyrus shared a picture on Instagram of her wearing the hair style. This trend has consumed modern culture and by connection has found its way into the Hipster scene. For a Hipster, they observe a trend, make it their own, and own it. They do this without any regard to where corn-rows had originated from-that they were a hair style that found its roots in Africa. Or as another example, the Man-Bun has recently been a trend that left men with longer hair and hair ties, but what frustrates me the most is how similar they look to Samurai hair styles, or more specifically, the chonmage. While not exactly the same, the Man-Bun is a close cousin to its Japanese predecessor. Unfortunately, not like Batman, it’s origin story is lost to its wearers. And not only lost, but Hipsters create a separate narrative that credits themselves, or their culture, rather than the actual source. And because it is so easy to plagiarise and take others work as their own, the Hipster has exponentially grown into a faction of our society we can no longer push aside. I propose that plagiarism isn’t just the copying of another’s work without credit, but of another’s culture, of their fashion, of their whole being. And in essence, Hipsters plagiarise other cultures.

But the question still stands, what is the cause of these Hipsters? How did they come to be? Why are they so prevalent in the United States? I would like to make the bold statement of saying that without the formation of the United States, we wouldn’t have Hipsters. We would be free of them, but not necessarily be a free nation. Because Hipsters take other cultures, and make it their own we can only make the conclusion that Hipsters try to assimilate other cultures into their own. To me, assimilate is a word that doesn’t describe the impact that Hipsters have created.Rather, Hipsters cannibalize other cultures to make their own. But the important fact is that the United States had to have Hipsters form out of its creation. At the United States’ conception, we have cultures rubbing against each other, fighting, and taking from one another. Hipsters are a natural product of cultural rubbing, and so as much as we hate them, Hipsters have secured a spot in the world. As long as there is a new culture to assimilate, there is a new “thing” for Hipsters to take. And because they are oblivious to their actions, it would make sense that any “Hipster-Prevention” would have null effect.

So, as unfortunate as it is, Hipsters are here to stay. They are not a culture’s best trait, but they are a trait nonetheless.


(While my references serve to compliment my argument, they are their own works that delve deeper and more critically into the smaller subjects they pursue. My mission is to try to cogently connect these ideas into a new and holistic viewpoint that looks at the broader image I tackle.)









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