Andrew Sullivan has a post about “what subculture will follow hipsters.” My prediction is “more hipsters.” Cultural trends have a funny way of beginning long before they began, and not ending until long after they’re over. Whenever I watch movies from the 90’s, I’m always struck by how much the 90’s looked like the 80’s. Yet hipsterism itself was already getting going in the 90’s. Just listen to “La Vie Boheme” from the musical Rent (first performed in 1994), an ode to hipsterism before anyone was using the word that way.
Another reason hipsters aren’t going away is that the logic of hipsterism isn’t going away. Call it “counter-signaling,” call it “conspicuous outrage,” there will always be people who go out of their way to reject the mainstream as a way of showing they’re better than the mainstream.
Also, the idea (found in some of the people Sullivan quotes) that political consciousnesses will replace consumerism as hipsterism goes out the door is a contradiction in terms. Hipsterism is all about being conspicuously politically conscious, conspicuously anti-consumerism. See Stuff White People Like on non-profits, awareness, The Daily Show, etc.