Twerking has enjoyed a pretty strong week. At least in terms of notoriety.
First, Miley Cyrus Twerking all over the MTV Video Music Awards stage Sunday night inspired up to 300,000 Tweets per minute by some estimates.
Now the Oxford dictionaries have listed as an official word: Twerk, verb.
The well-respected dictionary does a quarterly update of “current English,” adding terms that its editors say have been absorbed by popular culture.
Twerking made the cut, along with fauxhawk (i.e. the David Beckham haircut), phablet (phone and tablet combined) and selfie (see any Jenelle Evans photo).
As for the definition of Twerking?
The dictionary editors say that “twerk” has actually been around for 20 years. Apparently, it begam as a variation of “to work” … as in, “Work it girl!”
Twerking is also described as a portmanteau of “twist” and “jerk.”
Whether you’re twisting, jerking, working it or all of the above, people generally take it to mean dancing in a fervent, sexually suggestive fashion.
Wikipedia calls Twerking a “dance that involves shaking the hips and bottom in a bouncy, up and down motion, causing it to shake, ‘wobble’ and ‘jiggle.'”
The Urban Dictionary defines it as “a series of movements made by females of the humanoid variety as an expression of contempt for their fathers.”
Or, alternately, “rhythmic gyrating of lower fleshy extremities in a lascivious manner with the intent to elicit sexual arousal or laughter in one’s audience.”
No word if Oxford’s official entry will have a Miley Cyrus picture.