Posts tagged ‘Subculture’

January 24, 2012



howard ruff

Survivalism is a movement devoted to preparing for possible disruptions in social or political order, on scales ranging from local to international. Survivalists often have emergency medical and self-defence training, stockpile food and water, prepare for self-sufficiency, and build structures that will help them survive or ‘disappear’ (e.g. a survival retreat or underground shelter).

Anticipated disruptions include the following: clusters of natural disasters, patterns of apocalyptic planetary crises, or Earth Changes (in the form of tornadoes, hurricanes, earthquakes, blizzards, severe thunderstorms); disaster caused by the activities of humankind (chemical spills, release of radioactive materials, nuclear or conventional war, oppressive governments); societal collapse caused by the shortage or unavailability of resources such as electricity, fuel, food, or water; financial disruption or economic collapse (caused by monetary manipulation, hyperinflation, deflation, or depression); and global pandemic.

read more »

January 15, 2012

Burning Man

burning man

Burning Man is a week-long annual event held in the Black Rock Desert in northern Nevada. The event starts on the Monday before Labor Day, and ends on the holiday itself. It takes its name from the ritual burning of a large wooden effigy on Saturday evening. The event is described by many participants as an experiment in community, radical self-expression, and radical self-reliance.

Burning Man is organized by Black Rock City, LLC. In 2010, 51,515 people attended Burning Man. In 2011, attendance was capped at 50,000 participants. In 2011, Larry Harvey announced that the Org had begun the process of transitioning management of the festival over to a new non-profit called the ‘Burningman Project.’

read more »

Tags: ,
January 11, 2012


patrick bateman by Kelly Puissegur

Yuppie [yuhp-ee] (short for ‘young urban professional’ or ‘young upwardly mobile professional’) is a term that refers to a member of the upper middle class or upper class in their 20s or 30s. It first came into use in the early-1980s and largely faded from American popular culture in the late-1980s, due to the 1987 stock market crash and the early 1990s recession. However it has seen a small revival in the 2000s and 2010s.

Yuppies are derided for their conspicuous personal consumption and hunger for attention social status among their peers. Cornell University economist Robert H. Frank, author of ‘Luxury Fever,’ has remarked, ‘When people were denouncing yuppies, they had considerably lower incomes than yuppies, so the things yuppies spent their money on seemed frivolous and unnecessary from their vantage point.’ Pro-skateboarder and businessman Tony Hawk has said that yuppies give ‘us visions of bright V-neck sweaters with collars underneath, and all that was vile in the eighties,’ and he has remarked as well as that a ‘bitchin’ tattoo cannot hide your inner desire to be Donald Trump.’

read more »

November 30, 2011


state of the art

The demoscene is a computer art subculture that specializes in producing demos, which are non-interactive audio-visual presentations that run in real-time on a computer. The main goal of a demo is to show off programming, artistic, and musical skills. The demoscene first appeared during the 8-bit era on computers such as the Commodore 64, ZX Spectrum and Amstrad CPC, and came to prominence during the rise of the 16/32-bit home computers (the Amiga and the Atari ST). In the early years, demos had a strong connection with software cracking. When a cracked program was started, the cracker or his team would take credit with a graphical introduction called a ‘crack intro’ (shortened cracktro). Later, the making of intros and standalone demos evolved into a new subculture independent of the software (piracy) scene.

Prior to the popularity of IBM PC compatibles, most home computers of a given line had relatively little variance in their basic hardware, which made their capabilities practically identical. Therefore, the variations among demos created for one computer line were attributed to programming alone, rather than one computer having better hardware. This created a competitive environment in which demoscene groups would try to outperform each other in creating amazing effects, and often to demonstrate why they felt one machine was better than another.

read more »

Tags: ,
November 17, 2011



The Zazous were a subculture in France during World War II. They were young people expressing their individuality by wearing big or garish clothing (similar to the zoot suit fashion in America a few years before) and dancing wildly to swing jazz and bebop. Men wore large striped lumber jackets, while women wore short skirts, striped stockings and heavy shoes, and often carried umbrellas.

During the German occupation of France, the Vichy regime, in collaboration with the Nazis, and fascist itself in policies and outlook, had an ultra-conservative morality and started to use a whole range of laws against a youth that was restless and disenchanted. These young people expressed their resistance and nonconformity through aggressive dance competitions, sometimes against soldiers from the occupying forces.

read more »

November 17, 2011


Zoot Suit

Pachucos [puh-choo-koh] are Chicano youths who developed their own subculture during the 1930s and 1940s in the Southwestern United States. They wore distinctive clothing (such as zoot suits) and spoke their own dialect of Mexican Spanish, called Caló or Pachuco. Due to their double marginalization stemming from their youth and ethnicity, there has always been a close association and cultural cross-pollination between the Pachuco subculture and gang subculture.

The Pachuco style originated in El Paso, Texas, and Ciudad Juárez, Mexico, and moved westward, following the line of migration of Mexican railroad workers (‘traqueros’) into Los Angeles, where it developed further. The word ‘pachuco’ originated, probably early in the 20th century, in a Mexican Spanish slang term for a resident of the cities of El Paso and Juárez. Even today, El Paso and Juárez are the ‘El Chuco’ or ‘El Pasiente’ by some.

read more »

October 31, 2011

Straight Edge

sober living for the revolution

Straight edge is a subculture of hardcore punk whose adherents refrain from using alcohol, tobacco, and other recreational drugs. It was a direct reaction to the sexual revolution, hedonism, and excess associated with punk rock. For some, this extends to not engaging in promiscuous sex, following a vegetarian or vegan diet, and not using caffeine or prescription drugs.

The term was coined by the 1980s hardcore punk band Minor Threat in their song ‘Straight Edge.’ Since then, a wide variety of beliefs and ideas have been incorporated into straight edge including vegetarianism, animal rights, communism, and Hare Krishna beliefs. In many parts of the United States, straight edge is treated as a gang by law enforcement officials.

read more »

August 17, 2011



psychopathic records

Juggalo or Juggalette (the latter being feminine) is a name given to fans of Insane Clown Posse or any other Psychopathic Records hip hop group. Juggalos have developed their own idioms, slang, and characteristics. The term originated during a 1994 live performance by Insane Clown Posse. During the song ‘The Juggla,’ Joseph Bruce addressed the audience as Juggalos, and the positive response resulted in him and Joseph Utsler using the word thereafter to refer to themselves and their friends, family, and fans, including other Psychopathic Records artists.

Juggalos have compared themselves to a family. Common characteristics include drinking the inexpensive soft drink Faygo, wearing face paint and an interest in professional wrestling. They view the lyrics of Psychopathic Records artists (which are often violent in nature) as a catharsis for aggression.

read more »

August 8, 2011


Hipster Handbook

Hipster is a slang term that first appeared in the 1940s, was revived in the 1990s, and continued to be used in the 2000s and 2010s, to describe young, recently settled urban middle class adults and older teenagers with musical interests mainly in indie rock. Other interests in media would include independent film, magazines such as Vice and Clash, and websites like Pitchfork Media. In some contexts, hipsters are also called scenesters.

‘Hipster’ has been used in sometimes contradictory ways, making it difficult to precisely define ‘hipster culture,’ which has been described as a ‘mutating, trans-Atlantic melting pot of styles, tastes and behavior.’ Hipsterism fetishizes the authentic elements of all of the ‘fringe movements of the postwar era—beat, hippie, punk, even grunge,’ and draws on the ‘cultural stores of every unmelted ethnicity,’ and ‘regurgitates it with a winking inauthenticity.’ Others, like Arsel and Thompson, argue that hipster signifies a cultural mythology, a crystallization of a mass-mediated stereotype generated to understand, categorize, and marketize indie consumer culture, rather than an objectified group of people.

read more »

July 19, 2011

Bristol Underground Scene


massive attack

The Bristol underground scene is a term used to describe the culture surrounding trip hop, drum and bass and graffiti art that has existed in Bristol from the early 1990s to the present. The city of Bristol in the UK has spawned various musicians and artists, and is typified by its urban culture. While the city is most associated with a group of artists who emerged during the 1990s, especially the ‘Bristol Sound’, the city maintains an active and diverse underground urban scene.

The city has been particularly associated with trip hop. Trip hop was spawned in ‘the bohemian, multi-ethnic city of Bristol, where restlessly inventive DJs had spent years assembling samples of various sounds that were floating around: groove-heavy acid jazz, dub reggae, neo-psychedelia, techno disco music, and the brainy art rap.’

read more »

July 8, 2011


Moody Street Irregulars

Beatnik [beet-nik] was a media stereotype of the 1950s and early 1960s that displayed the more superficial aspects of the Beat Generation literary movement of the 1950s and violent film images, along with a cartoonish misrepresentation of the real-life people and the spirituality found in Jack Kerouac’s autobiographical fiction. Kerouac spoke out against this detour from his original concept.

Kerouac introduced the phrase ‘Beat Generation’ in 1948, generalizing from his social circle to characterize the underground, anti-conformist youth gathering in New York at that time. The name came up in conversation with the novelist John Clellon Holmes who published an early Beat Generation novel, ‘Go’ (1952), along with a manifesto in The New York Times Magazine: ‘This Is the Beat Generation.’

read more »

June 24, 2011

Incroyables and Merveilleuses

Fashion Victim

The Incroyables (Incredibles) and their female counterparts, the Merveilleuses (Marvelous), were a name for the fashionable subcultures living in France in the Directoire era (late 18th century). The exhibition of products of national industry, organized in 1798, testified to their infatuation with luxury.

The names are sometimes spelled and were pronounced ‘incoyables’ and ‘meveilleuses’ without the letter R, in reaction against the Revolution, which begins with an R, in which so many had suffered and lost relatives, the letter R was banished. Divorce became legal under the Directoire and morals tended to be looser than in the past. Many Incroyables were ‘nouveaux riches,’ gaining their wealth from selling arms and lending money (usury). When the Directoire period ended, society took a more sober and modest turn.

read more »