Dick Hebdige argues in his book, Subculture: the Meaning of Style, that the different subcultures in Britain in the 1950s, ’60s, and ’70s exemplify the fluidity of cultural objects. Thus, subcultures (such as the Mods, Punks, Skinheads) wishing to differentiate themselves from the parent culture “borrow” objects, styles, and music from ethnically diverse groups (like the African Caribbean or West Indian populations). According to Hebdige, the revolutionary value of a subculture depends on to what extent items, commodities, and/or signs from one culture are radically subverted or changed in another.
A subculture is a cultural subgroup differentiated by status. Ehnic background, residence, religion, or other factors that functionally unify the group and act collectively on each member.
The expansion of punk subculture, overall, is entirely a product of our postmodern times. As well as a direct result of art movements which occurred previously. Throughout time, there have been many groups of people. Who have faced degrees of isolation from society as a whole, who remedied this by creating distinct subcultures to combat feelings of alienation, as well as ways to reclaim their subjective powers. Subcultures like punk provide a sense of solidarity and understanding to supporter, which on the whole, is lacking in mainstream society.
Culture is very stable but it is still something that is subject to change. There are different causes to change including accidents or the unexpected outcomes of events that are already in exist. Sometimes it is also the attempt to solve a perceived problem. Change can also be forced upon a group through intense contact between two societies. Adapting and progressing are both consequences and are not causes of change.
The subcultures introduced in the previous sections of Hebdige’s book Subculture: The Meaning of Style have been described as a series of mediated responses to the presence in Britain of a sizeable black community. The proximity of the two positions – white working-class youth and Negro – invites identification and even when this identity is repressed or openly resisted, black cultural forms (e.g., music) continue to exercise a major determining influence over the development of each sub cultural style
A sense of belonging to the same culture can be broken down into more specific values and norms.
Some groups of people share a particular way of life and we term these smaller groups subcultures. Although we will be looking in much more detail at the idea of sub cultural groups, not everyone has exactly the same experiences. I am apart of a subculture of a “College student subculture”, to illustrate a couple of other sociological ideas.
Firstly, by becoming a College student you have chosen to join a particular sub cultural group with its own particular “way of life” (attending classes, learning, meeting your friends, doodling aimlessly in class, etc.). However, just because you are part of this subculture does not mean that you cannot be part of other sub cultural groups or, indeed, the culture of our society as a whole.
Secondly, we have started to introduce the idea that an individual’s place in society can be looked at on two basic levels: In terms of a general sense of culture and in terms of a specific sense of subculture. What it means to people is classifying them with a specific background, for example, to be English, French, American and so forth. Also that is, the various groups we belong to involve particular sets of norms that apply only when we participate in these groups.
Every individual participates in numerous sub cultural groups. The norms (and sometimes the values) that apply in one group may be different to the norms that apply in another (the norms that apply when you at home with your family may be very different to those that apply when you are out with your friends).
The problem, here, is that the potential for normative confusion is huge- and we have seen that the penalties for not behaving in accordance with social norms can be substantial. As people, therefore, we have to constantly consider how we can manage our lives to produce a sense of order and basic predictability.