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Geek, n. \ ‘gi:k \

An enthusiast or fan of one or more hobbies or intellectual pursuits, usually related to computers, science-fiction, comic books, video games, or other themes considered “non-mainstream”.


ORIGINS


The word geek comes from English dialect word geck, of Germanic origin, meaning “fool” or “freak”. In the early 1900s, it was used to describe a “circus freak” or sideshow circus performer whose acts were often grotesque or shocking.


In the 1980s, it was used pejoratively in teenage slang to describe those who lacked social graces or were obsessed with computers, computer technologies, or science fiction and was synonymous with the word nerd.


In the mid-2000s, a fashion trend dubbed “geek chic” saw young people adopting “geeky” attire, such as suspenders, Capri pants, and oversized horn-rimmed glasses à la Steve Urkel.


Now, the word geek is most often used self-referentially and simply refers to those who are passionate about one or more topics in pop-culture or entertainment, called “fandoms”.

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