Definition of subculture
1a : a culture (as of bacteria) derived from another cultureb : an act or instance of producing a subculture
2 : an ethnic, regional, economic, or social group exhibiting characteristic patterns of behavior sufficient to distinguish it from others within an embracing culture or society a criminal subculture
subculturalplay \-ˈkəlch-rəl, -ˈkəl-chə-\ adjective
Examples of subculture in a sentence
a subculture of local painters
a subculture of poverty and crime
Did You Know?
This common meaning of subculture (it has an older biological meaning) only appeared in the 1930s, and for about 20 years it was used mostly by sociologists, psychologists, and anthropologists. But in the 1950s, as America's wealth led to more and more teenagers getting their own cars and thus their independence, not to mention the arrival of rock 'n' roll, people noticed something unusual happening among young people, and began to speak of the "youth subculture". As the country's wealth and freedom of movement continued to increase, we realized that the U.S. had become home to a large number of subcultures. Today the Web makes possible more than anyone could have dreamed of back in the 1950s. When we happen to stumble on a subculture—bodybuilders, Trekkies, hackers, Airstreamers, anime lovers, motocross enthusiasts—we may realize with astonishment that we had never even imagined that it might exist.
First Known Use of subculture
SUBCULTURE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of subculture for English Language Learners
: a group that has beliefs and behaviors that are different from the main groups within a culture or society
Medical Definition of subculture
: to culture (as bacteria) anew on a fresh medium by inoculation from an older culture
Seen and Heard
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