Events & Reviews at This Ain’t The Rosedale Library

Hip: The History, by John Leland

Posted in Reviews, Store Picks by thisaintblog on February 12, 2009

hipToo many scenesters have the mistaken idea that ennui, boredom, smugness and jadedness are the same as hip. This book puts the notion of hip into historical context by going back to the days of slavery when it was more than a coping mechanism for West Africans, to the development of American Transcendentalism, and to the breakthrough of jazz into the popular mainstream. And that’s only the first fifth of the book. It necessarily goes off the rails bringing the hip into current culture. Saying what’s hip now would be so un-hip. It has many interesting footnotes which are testimony to Leland’s thorough research. Why did Bob Dylan call one of his last albums ‘Love and Theft?’. Harper Perennial, remaindered at $9.99

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