Abstract Title

A Deviant Form of Belonging

Abstract

Music has always been a moving force in culture. This study provides insight into the minds and motives of those involved in the culture of alternative music. The project extends work by Ross Haenfler (2013) into deviance and youth subcultures, painting a clear picture of how subcultures continue to “matter” to more millennials. The research explores the social world that is this subculture. Specifically exploring the crowd movement known as “mosh pits” to see why participants take part and what the experience is like for them. I collect firsthand accounts from those involved to explore the reasons behind the actions. Qualitative analysis of the responses provides insight into what possesses one to engage in “moshing.” The research explores an activity that is common to the alternative music culture, but alien to the general population. Preliminary findings suggest there is an “energy” in the room that attracts many. In this space, troubles are reported to slip away, societal stresses vanish, and a welcoming community is formed. When at a live show, many participants report feeling free of what tribulations follow them from their personal life, and find it a place to let go of pent-up tension. The results suggest a notion of community, acceptance, and understanding. This environment forms a safe space for people from troubled backgrounds and pasts to relieve pent up anger and energy safely. This brings people in to experience a world away from the one from which they feel ostracized.

Modified Abstract

Music has always been a moving force in culture. This study provides insight into the minds and motives of those involved in the culture of alternative music. The project extends work by Ross Haenfler (2013) into deviance and youth subcultures, painting a clear picture of how subcultures continue to “matter” to more millennials. The research explores the social world that is this subculture. The research explores an activity that is common to the alternative music culture, but alien to the general population. Preliminary findings suggest there is an “energy” in the room that attracts many. The results suggest a notion of community, acceptance, and understanding. This brings people in to experience a world away from the one from which they feel ostracized.

Research Category

Social Science/Education/Public Health

Author Information

Tristan DavisFollow

Primary Author's Major

Sociology

Mentor #1 Information

Dr. Christopher Dum

Presentation Format

Poster

Start Date

5-4-2018 1:00 PM

Research Area

Quantitative, Qualitative, Comparative, and Historical Methodologies | Social Psychology | Social Psychology and Interaction | Sociology of Culture

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Apr 5th, 1:00 PM

A Deviant Form of Belonging

Music has always been a moving force in culture. This study provides insight into the minds and motives of those involved in the culture of alternative music. The project extends work by Ross Haenfler (2013) into deviance and youth subcultures, painting a clear picture of how subcultures continue to “matter” to more millennials. The research explores the social world that is this subculture. Specifically exploring the crowd movement known as “mosh pits” to see why participants take part and what the experience is like for them. I collect firsthand accounts from those involved to explore the reasons behind the actions. Qualitative analysis of the responses provides insight into what possesses one to engage in “moshing.” The research explores an activity that is common to the alternative music culture, but alien to the general population. Preliminary findings suggest there is an “energy” in the room that attracts many. In this space, troubles are reported to slip away, societal stresses vanish, and a welcoming community is formed. When at a live show, many participants report feeling free of what tribulations follow them from their personal life, and find it a place to let go of pent-up tension. The results suggest a notion of community, acceptance, and understanding. This environment forms a safe space for people from troubled backgrounds and pasts to relieve pent up anger and energy safely. This brings people in to experience a world away from the one from which they feel ostracized.