Once a person wanting to learn spoken English has made it through the myriad of grammar rules and odd pronunciations, they are then thrown another curve ball: slang. Some words are simply made up and cannot translate. It’s then almost a whole other lesson plan to learn all the different words and phrases.
One of the most important pieces of slang students who want to learn spoken English should know is selfie. This was Oxford Dictionary’s word of the year in 2013. It means to take a picture of one’s self. It came into existence with the popularity of Facebook, SnapChat, and many other social platforms requiring pictures to document life.
Made popular by hip-hop songs, this word means to have something cool. It can also encompass a type of branding. For example, a college social fraternity or sorority will have sunglasses, t-shirts, pens, etc. with their Greek name on it, all of which would be considered swag.
Native speakers use this to mean something bad or disgusting looking, rude, loud, or obnoxious. Girls generally use it to refer to another girl whom they perceive as a diva, which makes it to number four on the list of popular slang words.
“Diva is a female definition of a hustla, of a hustla, of a, of a hustla,” says Beyonce Knowles in her song, “Diva.” Using a slang word to describe another slang word, what she means is a diva is a woman who goes out and gets what she wants. The term diva is not necessarily seen a good thing. There are some divas in pop culture, such as Beyonce herself or Oprah, who are role models. Some divas get what they want by taking advantage of others.