1.a word that is spoken aloud
definition of Wikipedia
language unit, linguistic unit[Hyper.]
spoken word (n.)
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Spoken word is a form of poetry that often uses alliterated prose or verse and occasionally uses metered verse to express social commentary. Traditionally it is in the first person, is from the poet’s point of view and is themed in current events.
In entertainment, spoken word performances generally consist of storytelling or poetry, exemplified by people like Hedwig Gorski and Gil Scott Heron, the lengthy monologues by Spalding Gray, and improvising ranters/commentators like Henry Rollins.
Modern day spoken word poetry became popular in the underground African-American community in the 1960s with the Last Poets. The Last Poets was a poetry and political music group that was born out of the African-American Civil Rights movement.
Spoken word poetry came more towards the mainstream in popularity a short time later when Gil Scott Heron released his spoken word poem The Revolution Will Not Be Televised on the album, Small Talk at 125th and Lenox in 1970.
Spoken Word was adopted by college circles in the early 1980s to describe a new wave of performing arts that was birthed during Postmodern Art Movement.
Many artists and poets have not published any of their works in book forms. Some use video and audio recording, the means used exclusively by Hedwig Gorski, who rejected what she called the "dull-drums" of book publishing in the 1980s. Spalding Gray's film Swimming to Cambodia is a well-known example of spoken word, with Gray siting at a desk, talking about his experiences during the filming of The Killing Fields. Nevertheless, spoken word today is part of the oral culture movement spreading literary expression that includes all minorities and women, unlike the domination by the white male community as was case with the Beats in the 1960s.
The Nuyorican Poets Café on New York’s Lower Eastside was founded in 1973 and is one of the oldest American venues for presenting spoken word poetry. The Nuyorican Poets Café in 1989 held the first documented poetry slam. 
On the West Coast Da Poetry Lounge and The World Stage are two of the oldest venues for spoken word poetry. The World Stage presenting the more literary side of the spoken word tradition and Da Poetry Lounge embracing the more performance side of spoken word tradition.
The Nuyorican Poets Café and Da Poetry Lounge have a close association with the poetry slam movement which was popularized by Russell Simmons’ Def Poetry Lounge with both main hosts Bob Holman and Shihan apprearing several times on the show.
Since its inception, the spoken word has been an outlet for people to release their views outside the academic and institutional domains of the university and academic or small press. The spoken word and its most popular offshoot, slam poetry, evolved into the present day soap-box for people, especially younger ones, to express their views, emotions, life experiences or information to audiences. The views of spoken word artists encompass frank commentary on religion, politics, sex and gender, often taboo subjects in the world of contemporary academic poetry.
Other alternative venues created for the dissemination of these works included The Virtual Free University and multimedia periodicals like Media Free Times  that were the de-design precursors of what are now commonly called "web-pages" and "E-zines".
When talking about emotion, it depends. A spoken word piece can be powerful with the right emotion behind it but, at the same time, a lack of emotion can set a poem apart. It all depends on the topic. Life experiences are best, especially when the person has actually lived through the experience. Lastly, spoken word is used to inform or make an audience conscious of some human aspect pertaining to life.
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