While Goths tend to be neglected in more mainstream media, they are thriving as part of online communities as part of the phenomenon of net.Goths. This paper considers some of the recent manifestations of such subcultural activities online, especially in relation to the practice of demarcating the boundaries of participation through displays of cultural capital (such as music and fashion), and aspects of communication that have emerged on the Internet such as ‘trolling’. The overarching concern of this paper is to explore some of the ways in which defining a subculture virtually may reinforce activities of the group in other environments.
Poppy Z. Brite, Courtney Love and Gothic Biography
Gothic horror author Poppy Z. Brite wrote a biography of former Hole singer Courtney Love in 1997. What seemed an odd departure for the former actually took advantage of the Gothic valences in the latter‘s life and depictions in popular culture. The narrative gothicises Love‘s story while simultaneously repudiating and relying on Goth subculture for some of its legitimacy. This articulation of gothic literary form with Goth popular culture constitutes one traversal of Brite‘s text. Using concepts from Deleuze and Guattaris work, the essays reading of Courtney Love‘s biography is one plateau among others in an ongoing study of what I call ‘minoritarian gothic’ in popular and literary culture.
This article defends the view that Gothic Studies should encourage research on contemporary gothic youth cultures from a Cultural Studies point of view. This is justified on two grounds: research on these youth cultures is a unique chance to consider gothic as a living cultural practice and not just as textual analysis mostly disengaged from the present; on the other hand, these subcultures are currently under attack by the media and moral minorities, especially in the USA, and Gothic Studies could - maybe should - help correct this regrettable situation born of prejudice against, and ignorance about, Gothic itself. The article reviews the embarrassing position of the Gothic Studies researcher today as regards gothic youth cultures and calls for the reinforcement of the poor knowledge we have of the evolution of these cultures in the last 20 years.
Critics of the Gothic have typically stated that ancient, foreign, Catholic, Italy was generally an obvious choice as the site of early Gothic ‘otherness’. I argue that Walpole‘s choice of Italy was in fact overdetermined by his experiences there from 1739–41. In Italy, Walpole learned various strategies for disguising a self implicitly unacceptable in England. Italy was notorious for its homoerotic subcultures. Its Carnevale institutionalised the masquerade, and Italian opera performed the notion that gender is a performance. Upon his return to England, Walpole constructed Strawberry Hill, his most extravagant and elaborate masquerade. Years later, when the dream of his grand staircase impelled, The Castle of Otranto, another disguise was expressed. According to Otranto, Strawberry Hill was the unconscious embodiment of the English cultural prohibitions imposed upon him; the first Gothic novel is also the first closet.
Ripped, torn and cut offers a collection of original essays exploring the
motivations behind – and the politics within – the multitude of fanzines that
emerged in the wake of British punk from 1976. Sniffin’ Glue (1976–77),
Mark Perry’s iconic punk fanzine, was but the first of many, paving the way for
hundreds of home-made magazines to be cut and pasted in bedrooms across the UK.
From these, glimpses into provincial cultures, teenage style wars and formative
political ideas may be gleaned. An alternative history, away from the
often-condescending glare of London’s media and music industry, can be
formulated, drawn from such titles as Ripped & Torn, Brass
Lip, City Fun, Vague, Kill Your Pet Puppy, Toxic
Grafity, Hungry Beat and Hard as Nails. Here, in a
pre-internet world, we see the development of networks and the dissemination of
punk’s cultural impact as it fractured into myriad sub-scenes: industrial,
post-punk, anarcho, Oi!, indie, goth. Ripped, torn and cut brings
together academic analysis with practitioner accounts to forge a collaborative
history ‘from below’. The first book of its kind, this collection reveals the
contested nature of punk’s cultural politics by turning the pages of a vibrant
This book is an anthology of selections from works dealing with same-sex love, desire, sexual acts, and relationships during the period 1550-1735 in early modern England. It presents religious and moral writings, pseudo-medical writings, criminal pamphlets, travel writings, and letters on same-sex desire. The condemnation of male and female same-sex sexual acts is embedded in the earliest Christian theology. The early modern medical, pseudo-medical, and anatomical texts in Latin are surprisingly reticent about the physiological and anatomical aspects of homoerotic sexuality and desire. Canon law had long condemned male same-sex sexual acts. The 1533-34 statute in England forbade male same-sex sexual acts but ignored female same-sex intercourse. English travel narratives dealing with the sexual customs of other cultures often present sexual licentiousness as endemic, sometimes touching specifically on sodomy and tribadism. The most detailed presentations of same-sex erotic relationships in non-European cultures are those relating to Turkey and the Turkish seraglio. Familiar letters, such as between James I and VI, could reveal personal secrets and be radically transgressive in their emphasis on fostering love and desire. The book discusses homo-sexual subculture during 1700-1730, translation of Latin and Greek texts, and numerous literature representing male and female same-sex erotic relationships. The largely 'socially diffused homosexuality' of the seventeenth century changed profoundly with 'clothes, gestures, language' connoting 'homosexuality'. The book shows how literary genres of male same-sex and female-sex desires such as Shakespeare's Sonnets, and Catherine Trotter's Agnes de Castro allow the modern reader to chart changes in their representation.
This book argues that punk and post-punk, whatever their respective internal stylistic heterogeneity, enjoyed 'sociological reality' in Samuel Gilmore's and Howard Becker's sense. It elaborates the concept of 'music worlds', contrasting it with alternatives from the sociological literature. In particular it contrasts it with the concepts 'subculture', 'scene' and 'field'. The book then outlines a number of concepts which allow us to explore the localised process in which punk took shape in a sociologically rigorous manner. In particular it discusses the concepts of 'critical mass' and 'social networks'. The book also applies these concepts to the London punk world of 1976. It considers how talk about punk migrated from face-to-face networks to mass media networks and the effects of that shift. Continuing the discussion of punk's diffusion and growth, the book considers how punk worlds took shape in Liverpool, Manchester and Sheffield. In addition, however, the book offers a more technical analysis of the network structures of the post-punk worlds of the three cities. Furthermore, extending this analysis, and combining qualitative and quantitative forms of analysis, the book considers how activities in different local post-punk worlds were themselves linked in a network, constituting a national post-punk world.
The relational character of subcultural ideology in the case ofCzech punks and skinheads
Hedvika Novotná and Martin Heřmanský
conformity.1 From within the same totalitarian regime,
moreover, and very much linked to the emergent punk subculture, came the
Such a political system was soon to change. Nevertheless, punks and skinheads remain fellow travellers to this day; indeed, the relationship between
the two subcultures, while taking different forms at different times in different
places, may even be seen as essential to their survival. We would argue, too,
that punk’s development is always informed by the character of the dominant
society of which it is part. Its subcultural
sociological work on punk conceptualises it as a subculture I begin with
and devote most attention to that alternative.
Both ‘subculture’ and ‘world’ were formulated in the work of the Chicago
School sociologists, where they were used interchangeably to denote:
1 A sub-community of actors located within a wider community context.
2 Characterised by a shared attribute and/or interest and a homophilous1
3 Whose in-group interactions generated a distinct set of conventions
and shared habits regarding such things as speech, dress, status and
establishment, so too did the
punks destroy those in one of the historical halls of French popular song as an
expression of cultural protest. When it appeared in France in the late 1970s,
punk was often equated with the events of 1968. However, in terms of social
impact the two events could not be further apart, as punk’s development in
France lacked the same critical power as the protests from a decade earlier or
its British antecedent.
Why did the punk subculture, which was so significant across the Channel,
have less of an impact in France? What was