Performing Punk: Subcultural Authentications and the Positioning of the Mainstream
mainstream are outlined. Each of these refers in turn to a particular script through which subcultural styles and identities are performed and authenticated as set apart. These different definitions are then combined into two patterned sets of meaning through a consistency in terms of how the binary subcultural/mainstream is worked and extended: A convex pattern, involves a boundary work to what is defined as external to punk, bending outwards. A concave points instead bends inwards, a boundary work against mainstream internal to punk. By showing how these patterns are interrelated spatially and symbolically, it is argued that subcultural meaning as well as the authentic have to be approached from within the subcultural. The mainstream is thus released from having an inherent meaning as “the outside,” “the dominant,” or “the commercial,” and more so, so is the subcultural and the subcultural authentic. Consequently, the same object can be performed differently, drawing upon different binaries, or through working the same binaries differently, to extend the subcultural through the use of analogies and metaphors. The total similarity between how punk is performed in Sweden and Indonesia, as well as the consistent differences between the two patterns,
point to a relative autonomy of the subcultural. Different definitions of the subcultural authentic and the mainstream are therefore not a matter of commitment, or degrees of authenticity, but rather different means to communicate, interpret, and act upon the subcultural.
- Philip Lalander
- Sociology (excluding Social Work, Social Psychology and Social Anthropology)
- cultural sociology
- patterns of meaning
- ISBN: 978-91-506-2375-8