Music worlds
in Networks of sound, style and subversion
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This chapter elaborates upon the notion of music worlds through a discussion of the work of Howard Becker and other relevant writers. It addresses how these worlds come about and how, in particular, punk and post-punk came about. Both 'subculture' and 'world' were formulated in the work of the Chicago School sociologists. In British sociology, the concept of subculture acquired a more specific meaning, following its appropriation in the work of Birmingham's Centre for Contemporary Culture Studies (CCCS). Subcultures, as the CCCS define them, are networks of working-class youths characterised by: the music they listen to; styles of dress, argot and ritual; distinctive activities; territories which they claim as their own. The CCCS's chief concern is working-class youths' resistance to domination. Music is important to this when and to the extent that subcultures identify with specific musical genres.

Networks of sound, style and subversion

The punk and post-punk worlds of Manchester, London, Liverpool and Sheffield, 1975–80


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