I am sorry, I am not from the US, but recently I started to encounter this term on the internet quite often, so I would like to learn what this means. I also would like to know, if there are any analogies in other countries, such as Russia, Thailand, Israel or Ukraine.

Can one say, "Woke" is the ones who are for the rights of transgenders? Or is it a lesbian thing? Or is it a movement against people who are trying to get acquainted with women on the streets (pickup) or in the workplace?


1 Answer 1


The term "woke" has its origins in African American Vernacular English (AAVE), meaning alert to racial or social discrimination and injustice.

It can be more widely viewed but seems more about people of color. It gained more widespread use beginning in 2014 as part of the Black Lives Matter movement.

This is relatively new word and interpretation, have been added to Merriam Webster Dictionary only in 2017.

  • So not specifically about LGBTQ rights, I'd also note that the connotation varies significantly with context. It was originally used favourably, but is increasingly used pejoratively by those who oppose its ideals.
    – James K
    Dec 25, 2023 at 11:48
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    @JamesK Everything that has opposition becomes a pejorative. "Capitalist", "Communist", "Republican", "Democrat", "Jew", "Christian", "Muslim", "Atheist", "Vegan", "Meat eater", "1%", "Elite", and "99%" have all been used pejoratively. In my personal opinion, it appears that supporters of "woke" use the term more as an adjective to an action instead of being a trait, or needing justification of some sense, similar to "heroic". Nobody born heroic, some action must come first. Detractors of "woke" view it more as a group association or set of worldviews. You can become "woke" just by believing.
    – David S
    Dec 26, 2023 at 19:17

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