B-boy (was Re: Bamboo Spanish, etc.)
Arnold M. Zwicky
zwicky at CSLI.STANFORD.EDU
Mon Apr 25 17:30:49 UTC 2005
On Apr 25, 2005, at 7:19 AM, Benjamin Zimmer wrote:
> On Mon, 25 Apr 2005 10:16:05 -0400, Benjamin Zimmer
> <bgzimmer at RCI.RUTGERS.EDU> wrote:
>> On Mon, 25 Apr 2005 03:35:46 -0400, bapopik at AOL.COM wrote:
>>> I just got finished adding "tar beach" and "B-boy" and "pedlock" to
>> From the site:
>> “B-Boy” or “B-Girl” (also “Bronx boy/girl” or “break boy/girl”) are
>> breakdancing terms from the 1980s Bronx. They are still used today.
>> As suggested by the Urbandictionary listing you quote, the term
>> actually emerged in the mid-'70s. But the first major press account
>> "B-boys" was a 1981 _Village Voice_ article:
>> Banes, Sally. "To the Beat Y'all: Breaking Is Hard to Do." In: _The
>> Village Voice_ April 22-28, 1981, p. 31. Also available in: _And It
>> Stop: The Best American Hip-Hop Journalism of the Last 25 Years_,
>> by Raquel Cepeda. New York: Faber & Faber, 2004.
> Whoops, I neglected to check the OED draft entries. Banes' article is
> first one cited.
> 1981 Village Voice (N.Y.) 22-8 Apr. 31 The heroes of these legends are
> the..B Boys, the Puerto Rican and black teenagers who invent and
> elaborate this exquisite, heady blend of dancing, acrobatics, and
> 1982 N.Y. Rocker Jan. 26/1 Flash's audience, termed ‘B-boys’, were
> fans of
> break music.
> 1984 D. TOOP Rap Attack viii. 115/1 The b-boy DJs and MCs were half-way
> between consumers and performers..and their response to packaged music
> to violate it with cutting and rapping.
by the early 90s there was a specifically gay (but still Black) take on
b-boys, as you can see by checking out "banjee/banji/banjie boy". in a
Language Log piece a while back --
i quoted from an earlier ADS-L posting, with special reference to James
Earl Hardy's 1994 novel B-Boy Blues.
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