Subcultural Style

Members of a subculture—punks, goths, b-boys, etc.— distinguish themselves from the dominant culture through shared styles of dress, taste in music, leisure practices and modes of media consumption. And since the 1970s, critical cultural theory has argued that subcultures are potent sites of resistance and symbolic empowerment for disenfranchised youth. In this lesson, we take a closer look at the meaning of subcultural style, the moral panic that characterised the social response to subcultures, and examine how elements of subcultural aesthetics are subsumed into the mainstream through the cultural logics of late capitalism.