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Subculture by Dick Hebdige

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Sochi Umadia

on 6 April 2014

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Transcript of Subculture by Dick Hebdige

Subculture by Dick Hebdige
Style in Revolt: Revolting Style
Two Forms of Incorporation
-The emergence of a subculture leads to hysteria in the press
- Style provokes a double response
-The commodity form
• Subculture establishes new trends and generates new looks and sounds.
• In order for the masses to accept the new trend, industries turn it into a commodity. Availability to everyone means that the subculture becomes "frozen".
-The ideological form
• Two strategies that deal with threat (page 357)
• Otherness is reduced to sameness
• Not able to analyze it because it is so exotic

Give an example of a different subculture that has been popularized.

Subculture: The Unnatural Break
- An identifiable subgroup within a society or group of people, esp. one characterized by beliefs or interests at variance with those of the larger group; the distinctive ideas, practices, or way of life of such a subgroup. Now freq. used in a less technical sense, particularly with reference to popular culture. (OED)

- Noise; an actual mechanism of semantic disorder: a kind of temporary blockage in the system of representation (page 355, first paragraph).
Style as Bricolage
- "Construction or creation from a diverse range of materials or sources" (OED)

Dick Hebdige
- Sociologist
- From the U.K
- Research focuses on the relationship between subculture and social classes in post-war Britain
- Wrote book that this article is from in 1979
- Emphasis on mods, punks, and rockers
- There is a cycle that encloses each subculture into popular culture.
- What is style according to the article?
- Clothing is a way for everyone to purposefully express who they are, how they feel and how they want others to view them.
- Page 359, third paragraph
- Difference between subculture and mass culture
- The point behind the style of subcultures is to communicate that they are different.
"Prominent forms of discourse (particularly fashion) are radically adapted, subverted and extended by the subcultural bricoleur" -John Clarke

- Place things in a symbolic ensemble, gives another meaning and erases original meaning.
- Punks. They wore everything that was taboo
- The media skewed images of the punks
- Punks were a predominantly white group

Style as Intentional Communication
Style as Signifying Practice
Style as Homology
- What specifically does a subcultural style signify to the members of the subculture?
- Subculture is internally structured and related to one another
- An anthropological perspective of punk:
• Sacred icons
• Semiotics
• Symbols
• Signifier
- "Instead of arriving at the point where we can begin to make sense of the style, we have reached the very place where meaning itself evaporates".

- Give an example of an icon, semiotic, symbol and signifier.
- It is connected with the process of meaning-construction rather than the final product
- Rethink relations between various subcultural styles themselves.
- Different youths bring different degrees of commitment
- Punk expressed itself through rupture
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