Article

Subcultures

Rupa Huq

in Childhood Studies

ISBN: 9780199791231
Published online March 2012 | | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/obo/9780199791231-0037
Subcultures

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Not all sociological terms become part of our everyday lexicon, but "subculture" is a term that transcends academia. The word now appears on the airwaves, in the circles of debate on popular culture, and on the pages of popular magazines. To assess precisely what "subculture" means, it is best to break the term up into its constituent parts. The stem "sub" has subaltern, underground connotations positing it in opposition to "parent" culture, whereas "culture," as many theorists such as Raymond Williams (see Keywords: A Vocabulary of Culture and Society, New York: Oxford University Press, 1976) have reminded us, can have many meanings that at the most basic level connote a way of life. The term is often used interchangeably with the less politically loaded concept of "youth culture." From the start, subcultures have implicated "youth," a term that, in layman’s terms, if we strip away diversions into adolescence, legal rights, (physical) puberty, emotional storm, and stress or transitions, could be described as "the state of being young." Subculture is now established as a field of study, as can be seen from the numbers of texts in circulation that deal with the subject.

Article.  9515 words. 

Subjects: Development Studies

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