Contemporary Meaning in English – What Is It


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Many people have a difficult time understanding contemporary meaning when they hear it used in conversation. A better way to get over this difficulty is to understand what the writer is trying to communicate. For example, an author who was writing about the use of social media in the business world might talk about its “new contemporary meaning.”

What is “contemporary”? A writer can choose to use a variety of definitions for contemporary meaning. Some writers call it “the current usage,” “the use of today,” or “the trend that is currently fashionable.” Other people call it “a current style,” “a style that is currently popular,” or simply “the form of literature which is currently in vogue.” Still, other critics describe contemporary meaning as “a trend that is regarded as not significant enough to be worth paying attention to.”

Contemporary Meaning

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As a writer who is interested in social media, how should I define its contemporary meaning? You can choose any of the above definitions. However, you should understand that meaning changes with time. Just because an author uses the word “current” to describe a trend doesn’t mean that it was anything less than significant in recent history. The same goes for contemporary. A writer may not want to use the word ” Contemporary” to talk about the latest fashion, but it would be more accurate to refer to it as a style.

In business, however, we tend to use ” Contemporary” to refer to something that is current or up to date. Take sports, for example. We talk about a new trend in sports apparel when, in reality, there have been many such trends in sports for several years. Is the new trend really ” Contemporary”? Probably not. But when a sportswoman wears the latest sports apparel, her successor’s popularity probably has a lot to do with how timely the clothing was and with how much her contemporary message communicated that she was cool and hip.

Example Of Political Debate

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Another example is a political debate. We have all participated in a political debate at one point or another, even if we were just engaged in a large discussion about the recent presidential election. What does contemporary mean here? Some people might think that we are talking about a recent political controversy or an issue where the parties disagree on major issues. However, if we look at the actual definition, contemporary has a much bigger meaning, and it is one that applies to a wide variety of different business topics.

Things To Consider

For instance, consider the recent kerfuffle over a new government program that supposedly will help businesses stay afloat during rough economic times. No matter what the government’s intentions, it will only succeed in doing so if people start to invest in business loans. Therefore, the only way that the program will succeed is if it causes people to borrow more money. The government does not have a very good track record when it comes to creating jobs, especially in relation to the business community. So, when the New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli released his report saying that the state’s Economic Recovery Program was causing a tremendous economic opportunity for New York City businesses, many people were quick to write off the whole thing as a complete waste of time, money, and energy.

Nevertheless, DiNapoli’s report did not completely score points for or against the program. In fact, the state comptroller found that most small New York City businesses were actually doing just fine even with the assistance of the Recovery Program, as they were being helped by increased revenues from borrowing. In other words, it is hard to pin down where the conflict lies and how the state’s experiment with stimulus money really began to fail.

Bottom Line

The important thing to remember is that contemporary and modern-day are not the same thing. While there is plenty of overlap between the two, there is also a great room for discussion as to what actually makes things contemporary or modern-day. Just remember that as you think about what things are contemporary or modern-day, you need to keep your mind focused on things that have been around for at least a few years. Business concepts, for instance, tend to change along with the times. So while you might use the phrase “contemporary” to explain a business concept today, you may use “modern” as the more appropriate term to describe it years down the road.

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