Mark Greif's The Hipster In The Mirror

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What is a Hipster? Everyone knows a hipster when they see one; the clothes they wear, the music they listen to, the kind of car they drive – they stick out like a sore thumb. They seem to be everywhere nowadays, ever evolving in their characteristics and personalities in order to stay ahead of the curve when it comes to what is cool. Regardless of your personal perception of hipsters there is no denying that they are an interesting breed of human – one that our society is obsessed with, even if it is in a “Steve Irwin Crocodile Hunter” kind of way. While Merriam-Webster’s does offer a definition for hipster, a “person who is unusually aware of and interested in new and unconventional patterns” seems entirely too vague and reasonable considering …show more content…

The biggest criticism many hipsters face is that they’re so concerned with their own identity or brand to the point of narcissistic behavior. Wanting to stand out from the crowd by not conforming to mainstream society is still a major objective for hipsters, and being different by being cool is of utmost importance. Mark Greif says in his article The Hipster in the Mirror that “pride comes from knowing, and deciding, what’s cool in advance of the rest of the world” (1). Hipsters don’t like cool things; they make certain things cool. They seem to have an inflated ego because of the way they carry their brand of cool. They flaunt it at the American public just to prove their identity is genuine. But can’t something be similarly said for people who desperately don’t want to be known as hipsters? Nobody wants to be called a hipster because the term is almost inherently negative. It’s always an insult, so people will go to great lengths to prove that they don’t fit the description. Hipsters may take the ironic route in order to protect themselves from criticism, but people who are so anxious about avoiding the label are very conscious of what other people think and want to make sure their identity isn’t being misconstrued. That sounds fairly narcissistic. Bowers puts society’s fascination with hipsters this way: “We talk about hipsters on the internet not only because we love to hate them, but also because looking at them is a good way of looking at our own values” (1). There are plenty of people out there who put hipsters down all the time because they’re insecure about their own identity, like a middle school bully picking on the nerdy kid at recess. Society’s obsession with hipsters is as much a reflection on society as it is

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