a new breed of "retrosexual"

Benjamin Zimmer bgzimmer at BABEL.LING.UPENN.EDU
Mon Sep 14 21:35:07 UTC 2009

Wordspy defines "retrosexual" as "a man with an undeveloped aesthetic
sense who spends as little time and money as possible on his
appearance and lifestyle," with cites back to 2003:


In this sense, "retrosexual" is in direct opposition to "metrosexual".
But there's a new Facebook-oriented sense of the word getting passed
around in the media -- appearing first in the Boston Phoenix and most
recently in Time:

Boston Phoenix, Jan. 22, 2009
Retrosexuals are people who rewind their own lives, digging into their
past to emerge with a current romantic partner.
Time, Sep. 21, 2009
"Facebook makes it easier for you to take that first step of finding
someone again," explains Rainer Romero-Canyas, a psychology research
scientist at Columbia University. "It has finally provided a way for
people to reach out to someone without fear of rejection." The Boston
Phoenix even coined a term, retrosexuals, for people who are taking
the plunge into recycled love.

--Ben Zimmer

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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