Word of the Week: Geek


Definition: A person considered to be very smart in a specific field (like science or technology), but who does not have social skills.

Example: The math convention was full of geeks.

The word 'geek' was first recorded in 1876, when it simply meant "fool" or "idiot".

Geek became more widely used in the late 19th century, referring to circus "geeks" who performed strange and disgusting acts that we would not consider entertainment today.

Geeks had a resurgence in the 1970s and '80s, with the rise of computer geeks. These geeks were considered clever high achievers, but bad in social situations.

The meaning of geek is still changing today. People with a passion may refer to themselves as a (put your passion here) geek. In the English speaking world, you will hear people call themselves "geeks". They might even be wearing the t-shirt!

One of the great things about studying language is to see a word like geek, with such traditionally negative meanings, turned into something positive.

Are you an English geek like we are? You can become one at one of our English schools in more than 40 locations worldwide.

Whether you are or not, we'd love to hear from you! Why not write a good sentence using the word "geek" and share it below? What kind of geek are you?


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