The kids are all right: 'Youthquake' is Oxford word of 2017

FILE - In this March 14, 2007 file photo, a man reads a copy of the Oxford Dictionary of English. Oxford Dictionaries is recognizing the power of the millennial generation with its 2017 word of the year: youthquake. Oxford lexicographers say there was a fivefold increase in use of the term between 2016 and 2017. It is defined as "a significant cultural, political, or social change arising from the actions or influence of young people." (Ian Nicholson/PA via AP, File)

LONDON — Oxford Dictionaries recognized the power of the millennial generation Friday with its 2017 word of the year : youthquake.

Oxford lexicographers say there was a fivefold increase in use of the term between 2016 and 2017.

It is defined as "a significant cultural, political, or social change arising from the actions or influence of young people."

The word, coined almost 50 years ago by then-Vogue editor Diana Vreeland, has been used to describe phenomena including surging youth support for Britain's Labour Party and the election of 30-something leaders in France and New Zealand.

Each year, Oxford University Press tracks how the English language is changing and chooses a word that reflects the annual mood.

Oxford Dictionaries president Casper Grathwohl said youthquake has "yet to land firmly on American soil, but strong evidence in the U.K. calls it out as a word on the move."

Runners-up included broflake — a man who is readily upset or offended by progressive attitudes that conflict with his views— and kompromat, a Russian term for compromising information collected for political leverage.

Oxford Dictionaries consultant Susie Dent said many of the year's standout words "speak to fractured times of mistrust and frustration."

"In 'youthquake' we find some hope in the power to change things, and had a little bit of linguistic fun along the way," she said. "It feels like the right note on which to end a difficult and divisive year."

Last year's word of the year was "post-truth."

You may also interested in

UK judge says Tunisia police 'shambolic' during...

Feb 28, 2017

The Tunisian police response to a deadly gun attack on a popular beach resort was "at best...

Welcome to your new office: A stranger's living...

Mar 2, 2017

The rise of self-employment and soaring office costs are fueling demand for shared office space in...

EU citizens in UK anxiously seek security before...

Mar 19, 2017

German neuroscientist Sam Schwarzkopf was startled to receive a letter from the British government...

What makes a cyberattack? Experts lobby to...

Mar 28, 2017

Policymakers have sometimes struggled to distinguish this-means-war cyberattacks from more mundane...

Less pressure to unwind eurozone stimulus as...

Mar 31, 2017

Inflation across the 19-country eurozone fell sharply in March due to softer underlying price...

Sign up now!

About Us

Future Science Today reports on captivating developments in science, medicine, technology, and the world around us.

Contact us: sales[at]futuresciencetoday.com