Pre WW II slang
for an independent, assertive/aggressive woman. Usually in show business
, a broad is a singer, dancer, actor or business-woman who sings loud, parties hard and is often abrasive, sarcastic and in-your-face
. A variation is the "classy broad" which implies she has either been born rich, snagged herself a sugar-daddy
, or has succeeded on her own.
Broads are generally moderately attractive or better, are never seen without their best dresses and perfect makeup, and know how to compete and win in a man's world
. In some pre-war Hollywood films, broads are portrayed as gangsters' girlfriends or even their accomplices or gun moll
s but that was rarely the case in real life. Also in Hollywood films of the era, broads chewed gum incessantly and spoke with a thick, sarcastic New York accent
Often men who felt threatened by strong-willed, successful women would call them broads in a derogatory sense.
Bette Midler on her persona: "People always love a broad -- someone with a sense of humor, someone with a fairly wicked tongue, someone who can belt out a song, someone who takes no guff. "
Hey Manny! Lookit dat broad... She's built like a brick shithouse
! - Construction worker to a friend.