This is a selective guide to some of the resources available for researching Subcultures and Scenes. This page will be your gateway to books, journal articles, and web resources. Here are a few other subject guides that will be of interest to you:
This guide provides descriptions of commonly used library resources for sociological research.
So, What is a Subculture Anyway?
Skateboarders. Goths. Club kids. Punks. Steampunks. Beats. Breakdancers. Hip Hop Heads. Deadheads. Phishheads. Slam poets. Jedis in Washington Square Park...just to name a few!
Subcultures are everywhere--some are more visible than others. But what is a subcutlure? What are we talking about? Here's the Oxford English Dictionary definition:
Subculture: an identifiable subgroup within a society or group of people, especially one characterized by beliefs or interests at variance with those of the larger group; the distinctive ideas, practices, or way of life of such a subgroup.
Films in the Avery Fisher Center
The Avery Fisher Center for Music and Media (AFC) is located on the 7th floor of Bobst Library. Here is just a sampling of the films documenting subcultures that are available at the AFC:
Blank generation tells the story of punk music in New York City in the mid-70s and documents the moment in musical history when diversity blossomed. Dancing barefoot traces the musical journey of Ivan Kral (the Patti Smith Group).
The artists, rebels, and bohemians who came to New York's Greenwich Village over many decades changed the face of American culture through their art and politics. This film portrays the important political and social movements that began in the Village: the first interracial jazz club, the earliest Socialist newspapers from before World War I, the Stonewall Rebellion. This unique history includes anecdotes from many famous writers, musicians and performers who got their start in the Village. Interweaves past and present, with 16mm footage, archival photographs, Hollywood movies, cartoons, informative interviews and scenes of contemporary village life. Accompanied by a lively soundtrack that ranges from ragtime to bebop to folk music, the film celebrates what was America's first bohemia.
A documentary exploration of the subculture of New York's young graffiti writers and breakdancers, showing their activities and aspirations and the social and aesthetic controversies surrounding New York graffiti. Dramatizes conflicts between graffitists and the city, as well as among the graffitists themselves.
This program examines the Deadhead subculture, individuals who follow the Grateful Dead from concert to concert: what kinds of people are attracted to this culture, and what attracts them to it, what social forms do Deadheads resist, what forms shape their behavior, what separates them from the mainstream? The program also examies the workings of a subculture from within.