Elizabeth Nolan Brown // Blog

media. music. feminism. food. city-dwelling. story-telling. and other things.

Rise of the Folkster

with 4 comments

urbanhippieNew York Magazine calls them “urban hippies,” but my friends and I, a few months back, coined a much catchier term: folkster.

We even toyed with a ‘Look at This Fucking Hipster‘ style tumblog, Rise of the Folkstr, chronicling this phenomenon, which of course came to naught, ’cause we’re not that fucking snarky. But.

The Folkster. I’m calling it here now, okay?

‘Cause it rings of NYT style section, I know, but I think there really is something to it. Particularly in Brooklyn, where my boyfriend lives, and I visit frequently. It’s kind of like recession-influenced hipsterdom, I think, excerpt that it was gaining momentum before all our money troubles. The recession, though, has helped the folkster movement gather steam, as young folks secretly, just a little bit, like all the chaos, finally able to feel themselves a part of some coherent generational turmoil we’ve so long been scolded for having absent from our lives.

Folkster attributes: farm-ier hipster clothes. Flannel. Beekeeping. Brewing ginger beer or mead. Rooftop gardening. Music like Bonnie Prince Billy or William Elliot Whitmore or Welcome Wagon or Woods. Returning to pre-industrial production methods. Localism. More urban and tech-savvy than your typical hippie, less likely to irrationally hate Starbucks. Knowing at least one person who has, since the beginning of the economic turmoil, packed it up from the city and moved to a farm/mountain town/California. Arthur magazine.

[If you’re wondering, I am not sure myself whether I’m being tongue-in-cheek about all this]


Written by Elizabeth

June 24, 2009 at 10:48 am

4 Responses

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  1. I don’t like the term folkster, but I have a feeling that it may pan out. I will give you $6 for the rights to claim that I coined that term. If you refuse, I will just tell people that I came up without before you, so take the $6, it’s like free money!


    June 24, 2009 at 1:19 pm

  2. I have to agree with you EB that there is a new element of style and culture within the ranks of the hip. And it does seem as though the hipsters of 2005 are now shifting towards the prohibition era of their movement. Details magazine actually did a pretty funny story on this last month that I should include…

    They dress like hoboes but spend like millionaires. Meet the poorgeoisie


    I should also note that as a Lindy Hopper, I see this everywhere in my dance scene. The best dancers are very selective about their music and are increasingly drawn to the tinky-tank music of New Orleans jazz. A video from a recent performance by The Bitter Dose of DC is a good example… http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6eMrFv0Zz7w


    June 24, 2009 at 1:50 pm

  3. […] Carpenter on Urban Farming In Books, City-Dwelling, Food on July 29, 2009 at 10:47 am Folkster alert? Next American City interviews Novella Carpenter, author of Farm City: The Education of an […]

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