Wagwan

What does wagwan mean in Jamaican English?

What's going on?

Wagwan means "what's going on?" in Jamaican English. Jamaicans, or other Caribbeans, typically use the term to greet friends.

The phrase came from Jamaican Patois (English-based creole language) and grew in popularity in the 1990s. People often say it in person when greeting friends but may also use it online and in text messages.

The term is not exclusive to those that live in Jamaica or another Caribbean country. People, typically Jamaicans or other Caribbeans, may use it wherever they live. For example, it is especially prevalent in the ghetto neighborhoods of London among Jamaican immigrants.

Wagwan controversy

Some critics have claimed that non-Caribbean people (mainly white people) have appropriated the term. However, others have countered that it's a cultural term often used by poor people in the ghettos of London and that it's not a matter of nationality but culture.

Example

"Wagwan, my boi?"
"Not much, you?"

Jamaicans primarily use wagwan

Related Slang

Usage

Last Updated: December 8, 2021

Wagwan definition

This page explains what the slang term "Wagwan" means. The definition, example, and related terms listed above have been written and compiled by the Slangit team.

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