Brown definitely has a dialect of its own. Certain words seem to pop out of conversations and trend through the student body. So we at BlogDailyHerald thought it was high time to record these snippets of Brown vocab and educate one and all in what it’s like to speak like a Brunonian.
Here’s a condensed list of those words uttered across campus that have reached the ears of the Blog. It’s difficult to jot down an extensive catalog of the Brown vernacular, but this is surely a start.
Definitions courtesy of dictionary.com, examples inspired by true events around Brown.
agency (n): a means of exerting power or influence; an organization, company, or bureau that provides some service for another.
Example : “I eat the Ratty’s vegan nuggets errday because I respect chicken agency.”
hipster (n): a person, characterized by a particularly strong sense of alienation from most established social activities and relationships.
Example : “I don’t understand why Brown is stereotyped as hipster…” *Sips iced soy Chai, and resumes reading Chekhov*.
soy (n, adj): made from the soy bean, a legume used for food.
See example for hipster.
postmodern (adj): noting or pertaining to architecture of the late 20th century, appearing in the 1960s, that consciously uses complex forms, fantasy, and allusions to historic styles, in contrast to the austere forms and emphasis on utility of standard modern architecture… Phew.
Example : “Isn’t the Granoff Center such a great embodiment of postmodern architectural techniques?” “Get your nose out of your Contemporary Architecture book.”
Ruth (n): Ruth Simmons herself, in all of her glory, but more familiarized within the Brown community.
Example : “I can’t wait to see Momma Ruth’s talk on the state of affairs of the University. What has Ruth been up to?”
heteronormative (adj): this one isn’t even on dictionary.com yet, nor is it approved by spell check, but Wikipedia swoops in to save the day—“any of a set of lifestyle norms that hold that people fall into distinct and complementary genders (man and woman) with natural roles in life”.
Example : “Valentine’s Day is just a celebration of our culture’s heteronormative standards… So passé.”
hegemony (n): aggression or expansionism by large nations in an effort to achieve world domination.
Example : “I didn’t even know what hegemony meant before I came to Brown. Now I use it every two sentences in my POLS papers.”