Women and Gender Roles in Post-Subcultural Theory: Example of Rave Culture

Rašeljka KRNIĆ


During the seventies and up to the mid-eighties, the Birmingham School subculture theory concept dominated the sociological study of the connectedness of young people, style and musical taste. However, some authors started to question some of the basic postulates of the than understanding of subcultures in the early eighties. Even though the term "post-subcultural" had been used by Chambers as early as 1987, it was introduced into the subcultural discourse by Polhemus (1996) and Muggleton (1997) in the mid-nineties. "Post-subcultural theories" is a joint name for an entire spectrum of concepts and theories from the early nineties that still study similar phenomena of young people’s gatherings, but no longer insist on the conclusions and the terminological apparatus of the subcultural concept. Along with numerous areas of critique relating to the problem of class analysis, the question of resistance, the disregard of local context, the role of media, etc., one of the most significant of them relates to the problem of neglecting the role of women in subcultural spaces, and the one-dimensional understanding of gender roles and the nature of sexuality. Post-subcultural studies bring a far greater number of analyses that focus on the role of women in subcultural practices and cultural production, and pose the questions of female experience and female perspective of subcultural experience. The studies of various electronic music scenes revealed rave culture as a distinctive subcultural space, where traditional gender roles, as well as the meaning of sexuality are redefined through altered communication and interaction practices.


Birmingham School; post-subcultural theory; gender roles; rave culture

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Print ISSN 1330-0288 | Online ISSN 1848-6096