Download White Boys, White Noise: Masculinities And 1980s Indie by Matthew Bannister PDF

By Matthew Bannister

To what volume do indie masculinities problem the ancient development of rock tune as patriarchal? This key query is addressed by way of Matthew Bannister, related to an in-depth exam of indie guitar rock within the Eighties because the culturally and traditionally particular creation of white males. via textual research of musical and important discourses, Bannister presents the 1st book-length examine of masculinity and ethnicity in the context of indie guitar tune inside US, united kingdom and New Zealand 'scenes'. Bannister argues that earlier theorisations of (rock) masculinities have tended to establish sorts of working-class deviance and actual machismo as 'straw men', oversimplifying masculinities as 'men behaving badly'. Such ways disavow the ways in which masculine strength is articulated in tradition not just via illustration but additionally highbrow and theoretical discourse. via re-situating indie in a historical/cultural context of paintings rock, he exhibits how masculine strength may be rearticulated via excessive, avant-garde, bohemian tradition and aesthetic concept: canonism, negation (Adorno), passivity, voyeurism and camp (Andy Warhol and the Velvet Underground), and primitivism and infantilism (Lester Bangs, Simon Reynolds). In a similar vein, he additionally assesses the influence of Freud on cultural thought, arguing that reversing binary conceptions of gender by means of associating masculinities with an essentialised passive femininity perpetuates patriarchal dualism. Drawing on his personal event as an indie musician, Bannister surveys a variety of indie artists, together with The Smiths, The Jesus and Mary Chain, My Bloody Valentine and The Go-Betweens; from the U.S., R.E.M., The Replacements, Dinosaur Jr, Hüsker Dü, Nirvana and hardcore; and from NZ, Flying Nun acts, together with The Chills, The fresh, the Verlaines, Chris Knox, Bailter area, and The Bats, demonstrating vast continuities among those it sounds as if disparate scenes, when it comes to gender, aesthetic idea and ways to well known musical background. the result's a publication which increases a few vital questions on how gender is studied in pop culture and the measure to which replacement cultures can critique dominant representations of gender.

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Extra resources for White Boys, White Noise: Masculinities And 1980s Indie Guitar Rock (Ashgate Popular and Folk Music Series)

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This explains why Frankfurt School theories of culture are generally viewed as allowing too little space for individual agency and subjectivity. Femininity, for example, is not theorised other than as a negation or inversion of masculinity – again demonstrating how rational dualisms lead to essentialisation of the other. Jessica Benjamin comments: The idea of rationalization forms a bridge between intellectual history and the history of social and economic relations. It describes the essence of modern social practice and thought.

Willis defends these attitudes by claiming they are preferable to ‘bloodless humanism’: the rockers’ sexism and racism is more honest than an intellectually correct but abstract worldview (pp. 34–5). Willis relates the bikers’ lifestyle to their preferred music – 1950s and 1960s rock and roll – by the concept of homology: ‘the loud, strident tones of the music symbolically held and generated all the important values – movement, noise, confidence’ – fast, ‘driving’ rock and roll simulates the adrenalin rush one gets from rapid acceleration (1978, p.

Many of the customary forms of homosocial interaction within New Zealand society – work, sport – do not allow participants to express feelings or be responsible for them. Instead they tend to require acting out certain socially accepted ideas of masculinity, which are not necessarily in the best long-term interests of participants. The group never meets with a set agenda. Its primary purpose is not intellectual – there is no required reading. There are few set rules on behaviour, although members are expected to turn up on time and stay for the duration (usually about two and a half hours), not to consume drugs or alcohol during that time, and not to discuss what occurs there outside the group.

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