I feel like this is a very important topic. I myself am a nerd, but I’ve been called a geek meant in the derogatory sense and honestly I did feel like it was an insult–but not for the reason’s it was meant to be.
According to Sparknotes, there are four main differences between nerds and geeks, all of which are very stereotypical. Academics vs interests, dress, school activities and so forth. It’s almost insulting but true at the same time.
As a self proclaimed nerd–I think the most important difference is what YOU proclaim to be. From personal experience geek’s tend to be more into anime and comic books. They like one thing and are experts on that one thing and make everyone know it, whether that’s Star Wars, music in general or whatever else your passionate about. Nerds tend to be very academic as well as enjoying reading, Star Wars, Star Trek and so forth. Video games are for everyone so I don’t think that there is a huge line between nerd and geek.
There’s a scientist who researched this very social issue and found some interesting results. Settles says “…geeky words are ‘more about stuff, while nerdy words are more about ideas….Geeks are fans, and fans collect stuff; nerds are practitioners, and practitioners play with ideas.” Not sure how I feel about these findings but they are pretty accurate. There’s a whole chart if your interested but he also said that there’s too many similarities to fully draw a line as different variations of words and subjects fell on different sides. For example ‘e-books’ fell on the geek side where as ‘books’ fell on the nerd end. Intelligent is more geeky and intellectual and education are more nerdy.
I myself enjoyed science and English in school as well as music, comic books, video games and of course Star Wars and Star Trek. I read a lot of 19th century British books as well as modern science fiction and fantasy novels. My sister will swear until the day she dies that she is a geek, not a nerd. The poor girl is so smart and talented but could careless about her grades. All she want’s to do is draw, listen to music and watch her anime. So for us, I’d say the stereotypes describe us to a tee. But with my group of friends it doesn’t, we’re a bit of both actually. I like band/graphic tee’s with girly pieces like skirts and cardigans while Mulan dresses very girly, Elsa dresses like a color blind gym rat and Belle just wears whatever she can get her hands on. I think we all look absolutely beautiful, especially when we’re together so stereotypes just don’t fit us.
You can be both, if you want to be. Or you could go totally hipster and refuse to conform to either stereotype. Just do you, Love and you’ll be grand.
Love you all!