A Too-Serious Hipster Takedown

From AdBusters, my senior-year Print Media Design professor’s favorite publication:

An artificial appropriation of different styles from different eras, the hipster represents the end of Western civilization – a culture lost in the superficiality of its past and unable to create any new meaning. Not only is it unsustainable, it is suicidal. While previous youth movements have challenged the dysfunction and decadence of their elders, today we have the “hipster” – a youth subculture that mirrors the doomed shallowness of mainstream society.

While the working-class symbol usurpation thing always galled me, I don’t think calling these goofs symbolic of “the end of Western civilization” is really valid. Hipsters have always been about cooler-than-thou meaninglessness for socializing’s sake. If you hold people like that out as the political vanguard of a generation, of course things are going to seem hopeless. In the real world, that guy on Rivington with the tilted Fidel Castro hat is too busy organizing the Of Montreal after-party to want to be a spokesman for social change, nor should he be seen as one.

So yeah, hipsters = not worth that much intellectual dissection.

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