Emo stands for emotional or emotional hardcore. It was a style of rock music developed since the ’80s that places a strong emphasis on expressing feelings, especially emotions relating to insecurities, anger, or sadness. By far, it is teenagers and the younger population who are involved in the emo subculture. Therefore, song topics often relate to life experiences that younger folks like us can relate to such as romantic love or not being understood. The music can act as a way for us to vent our emotions.
Why is emo music often so dramatic and angst-ridden? Simply being a teenager is a time to start discovering one’s own identity and this can be a challenging time. Perhaps it is a reflection of teenagers in general. Teenagers have always been known to vent through music throughout the eras. Even though a significant number of teens turn to Emo to fuel their depressive thoughts. Others in the emo culture use the music for exploring emotions and discovering oneself to grow.
Later, emo was recognized as a subculture with its own kind of attitude and fashion. Emo individuals are known to be sensitive, emotional, in turmoil, and shy. Their style is denoted by tight jeans, long black bangs, tight shirt, black rimmed thick glasses, work jackets, and old clunky shoes.
More recently, certain kids who love the style may imitate the fashion or expressiveness of emo without being driven primarily by the dark inner turmoil that affects so many considered to be true emo. These kids are known as “scene kids”. The devotion to the spirit of emo may vary among these kids. Some are trying to act and look cool to fit in. But most seem to make emo their own as they still do embrace the essence of emo by exploring their emotions, connecting with emo related music, and taking pride in their fashion.
In pop culture, emo kids are often made fun of for being overdramatic, depressed, and suicidal. The reality is that emo people do have unique personalities. We are all different, and while the stereotype may be somewhat true, it is unfair to assume most emos are one way or another. This is especially true since there an endless number of definitions for what people perceive to be emo.