The Clash in 1977

RETRIEVING THE MESSIANIC PROMISE OF PUNK 107 5 Retrieving the messianic promise of punk: The Clash in 1977 Kieran Cashell No future It is an ‘uncanny and slightly depressing’ experience to have one’s own past ‘recuperated’ as the subject matter of social history.1 So Simon Critchley laments the canonisation of past countercultural movements as available historical objects. Endorsing Jon Savage’s pioneering exposition of punk culture in England’s Dreaming as inaugurating the paradigm, Critchley inadvertently recapitulates the narrative’s received popular

in Working for the clampdown

10 The small world of British post-punk Music worlds exist on different scales: local, national, international and increasingly (since the turn of the century) virtual (Bennett and Peterson 2004). With the exception of Chapter 7, which examined the way in which punk ‘went national’ as an effect of broadcast media and moral panic, my focus in this book has been upon local worlds. The local was very important to both punk and post-punk in a number of ways. Musicking is always local in one respect: it  happens somewhere, in a particular locality (although

in Networks of sound, style and subversion
British DIY punk as a form of cultural resistance

12 ‘Punk belongs to the punx, not business men!’: British DIY punk as a form of cultural resistance Michelle Liptrot At the start of the British punk phenomenon, the journalist John Collis wrote ‘punk rock is designed simply to make money’.1 Thirty-six years on there seems to have been some accuracy in Collis’s prediction. For example, the construction and commodification that was integral to punk from the beginning can be illustrated by the fact that Malcolm McLaren put together his ‘punk project’ in the form of the London band, the Sex Pistols.2 McLaren

in Fight back

7 The evolution of an anarcho-punk narrative, 1978–84 Russ Bestley and Rebecca Binns From its inception, punk, as articulated through its fanzines, was anti-elitist; positioning itself against self-indulgent, outmoded rock stars and the pretentions of rock journalism.1 Pioneering punk zine Sniffin’ Glue ( July 1976) and those that immediately followed2 sought an authentic form of expression to relate directly with ‘disaffected kids’ who comprised the demographic of punk subculture. Against the hierarchical structure inherent in mainstream media, punk zines

in Ripped, torn and cut

5 Micro-mobilisation and the network structure of the London punk world This chapter has two aims. First, to demonstrate how the theory of micro-mobilisation outlined in Chapter 4 applies to and explains the emergence of punk in London during 1976. Second, preparing for what follows in Chapter 6, to offer a preliminary analysis of the social network which underpinned the London punk world. The theory of micro-mobilisation begins with the claim that the collective action generative of a music world requires a critical mass of suitably motivated and resourced

in Networks of sound, style and subversion

no desire to revisit or re-enact any previous Spanish tradition. Rather, the influence of icons and topics present in North American music, films, novels and lifestyles was very apparent. In this context, it is widely acknowledged that an appropriation of certain aspects of punk resurfaces in the 1990s in Spanish artistic and cultural projects. 1 Nevertheless, most critical efforts have been devoted to literary analyses

in Screening songs in Hispanic and Lusophone cinema

4 ‘Are you going backwards, Or are you going forwards?’ – England past and England future in 1970s punk Ruth Adams Ranking Roger: The Clash did so much. They set the trend for others to come through. Anarchy was to destroy the old but you’ve got to make sure you build a good new thing. Their records were like the anarchist rebuilding.1 This chapter examines the ways in which the cosmopolitan and political approach of The Clash could be regarded as progressive and forward looking. Specifically, it will focus on the engagement with reggae by the band (and the punk

in Working for the clampdown
Notes on the Repertoire

The Gothic or “Goth” subculture emerged from Britains punk scene during the early 1980s. The music associated with the movement showed a sophisticated handling of themes and aesthetics associated with Gothicism, proving that the Goth adjective was more than just a fanciful label given to the bands by the music industry and the popular press. In order to gain a greater understanding of what is genuinely Gothic about this body of music, this study investigates Goth from a musicological perspective exploring specific techniques that were used by the artists, and examining the reasons why Gothicism appealed to many British youths during the Thatcher-era.

Gothic Studies
Pop, politics and punk fanzines from 1976

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 underground press.

Abstract only
Punk, politics and resistance

The Subcultures Network is a cross-disciplinary research network for scholars and students interested in the relationship between subcultures (in all their forms) and wider processes of social, cultural and political change. Bringing together theoretical analyses, empirical studies and methodological discussions, the network is designed to explore the relationships between subcultures and their historical context, and the place of subcultures within patterns of cultural and political change. This book is very much a product of the Network's brief and emerged, in large part, from the inaugural symposium held at London Metropolitan University in September 2011. The book is divided into three parts, each with a broadly defined theme. The first of these relates to punk and identity, particularly with regard to gender, class, age and race. The second part looks at punk's relationship to locality and space. In particular, it deals with two overlapping processes. First, the ways in which punk's transmission allowed for diverse interpretation and utilisation of the cultural form beyond local, regional and national boundaries. Second, the extent to which punk's aesthetic and expression was shaped by, inspired and reflected the environments in which its protagonists lived. The third and final part concentrates on communication and reception. From within the culture, the language of punk is brought under discursive analysis by Melani Schröter, who looks at the critiques of 'normality' contained within the lyrics of German punk bands from the late 1970s through to the present day.