#USSlang: African-American vernacular

February is special because of the celebration of Black History Month in United States and many other countries. It is an event to celebrate the heritage of African-American people. From their history, their struggle against racism, to their culture.

So, in this article, we will discuss some of the most common words used in African-American slang!

“also called african american vernacular english or AAVE, if i may add.” – @alasadulloh

You may have heard these words in hip-hop music and Hollywood movies. Like any other slang, they can’t be used in formal settings.

In fact, some can only be used among African-American people. They’d think it’s offensive if it’s used by other race. Which one? Let’s see from this list … plays something hip-hop to begin the session

1. Aight. Meaning: ‘Alright.’ Used at the end of a sentence to confirm.

  • Example:
    • Nobody gonna bring yo

    • u down, aight?

2. Bling. Meaning: accessories with diamonds, worn by rappers. Inspired by the sounds diamond makes when moved.

IMG_6057

3. Blown up. Meaning: very angry, or becoming very popular at short time.

  • Example:
    • “50 Cent has blown the fuck up!”

4. Bomb. Meaning: Something very cool.

  • Example:
    • “The new Beyonce album is the bomb, man!”

5. Boo. Meaning: Girlfriend/boyfriend; “boo = bae xD” – @nazhifa189

  • Example:
    • “You will always be my boo.”

6. Booty. Meaning: Butt.

  • Example:
    • “That guy has been staring at my booty.”

7. Candy-ass. Meaning: Weak or wimpy.

  • Example:
    • “Stop crying, you’re such a candy-ass!”

8. Crib. Meaning: House.

  • Example:
    • “Welcome to my crib, yo!”

IMG_6058

9. Folks. Meaning: People. In Australia, ‘folks’ is a slang that means “parents.”

  • Example:
    • “These guys are my folks, they’re with through happiness and sadness.”

10. Ho. Meaning: Slut, prostitute.

  • Example:
    • “That ho stole my boyfriend!”

11. Hood. Meaning: The ghetto, a community of African-American.

  • Example:
    • “I’m gonna meet my folks at the hood tonight.”

12. Holla. Meaning: A greeting OR expression of happiness.

  • Example:
    • “Holla! My boy just picked off that pass!”

13. Mo. Meaning: Short version for ‘more’.

  • Example:
    • “Remember that mo money means mo problem!”

14. Gangsta. Meaning: A gang member or something cool.

  • Example:
    • “That Nike hoodies are so gangsta.”

15. Ghetto. Meaning: Something that is not high-cultured.

  • Example:
    • “It’s ghetto when your hair is longer in the front than in the back.”
    • I think “it’s so ghetto” has the same feeling as “alay banget” in Indonesian language, no?

16. Peep. Meaning: Friends.

  • Example:
    • “Come hang with me and my peeps!”

17. Pimp. Meaning: Something good, cool, profitable or turning into something good.

  • Example:
    • “Let me pimp your car for you.”

IMG_6059

Important note about African-American slang:

The word ‘nigga’ may only be used among themselves. ‘Nigga’ is usually used as greeting or to mention a black person. But it still has a negative connotation when used by other race. So don’t use it unless you want to get into trouble!

Compiled and written by @animenur for @EnglishTips4U on Saturday, January 31, 2015

Related post(s):

^MQ

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