The origin of the “Karen” meme • Sunrise on 7
30 July 2020 8:24 pm
What does it mean to be a “Karen”? Or more accurately, what does it meme to be a “Karen”? Once a meme, it’s now common vocabulary.
*speaks in Karen* I’d like to speak to the manager.
We’ve all seen “Karen” memes, we’ve all had a good laugh, and chances are, we’ve all met a “Karen” or two in our day-to-day lives. You may have even been called “Karen” yourself and been left quietly confused.
But what is a “Karen”? Who are they? And where did it come from?
Born out of online meme culture, the name “Karen” is used to represent middle-aged white woman, with a very specific haircut, who feel entitled to be outraged about absolutely anything and everything and use their privilege to get away with it.
Recently, you’ve likely seen many a Facebook video featuring Karens complaining about their right to not wear a mask during COVID-19.
But what happens if your name is actually Karen? Unfortunately, in this situation, you’re just rather unlucky. No one chooses to become a meme. Memes seem to gain speed organically and randomly.
However, there is good news. Much like the popular “OK, boomer” meme, being a “Karen” is more about your attitude, the way you go about your life, and how you treat others. You don’t have to be born between 1946 – 1964 to be labelled a “boomer,” and you don’t literally have to be named Karen to be a Karen.
There are many elements of being labelled a Karen that come down to someone’s appearance. But it’s more about a state of mind. It’s about energy. For all I know, “Meg” could have just as easily become the name of this popular meme.
Want to learn more about the Karen meme? Watch me explaining it all on Sunrise: