Political apathy, my only concern about this scene.

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Political apathy, my only concern about this scene.

Postby RichardsTime » 30 Dec 2013, 20:12

I've been going to mainstream and underground events for about six years now and I love the music and the people as much as I did when I started and the only concern that I have is that the people seem to be very apolitical, possibly more so than the general population? I do believe that the scene is just a romp, an intensely enjoyable escapist form of consumerism and I can't see anything radical about it. Politics is a subject that can't be talked about before, during or after an event and most fans seem to be totally clueless about it though hardcore and underground music fans do seem to be much more switched on but not particularly active. The combination of your favourite music, friends and various substances that can oil the works is obviously a powerful one.

I'm sure attitudes will shift and change and as a committed political animal my position is "Yeh okay, fill your boots and party on if you must but don't forget that there is a world that needs changing." Obviously that's asking people to get the balance right.
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Re: Political apathy, my only concern about this scene.

Postby PaulX » 31 Dec 2013, 17:16

It has only briefly been an overtly 'political' scene, Richard, as far as I can remember. There was campaigning against the Criminal Justice Bill in the early 90s, of course, and there was a period when actions such as Reclaim The Streets tended to incorporate some rave culture.

But apart from that, it has generally been more about hedonism and perhaps exploring 'inner space'. I wouldn't expect it to be any other way tbh. People go out to have a good time, not debate the finer points of Marx's Theses on Feuerbach. ;)
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Re: Political apathy, my only concern about this scene.

Postby RichardsTime » 31 Dec 2013, 19:49

:o "Marx's Theses on Feuerbach" I'll have to look that one up.

I'm trying to figure out why the 1% ruling elite are so utterly in charge at the moment and I'm sure that there are a range of factors that have played in their direction.

I remember becoming radicalised in my early twenties, it was a lost and found experience. At first it was just the obvious observation that there is an awful lot wrong with the world and a sense of being disaffected and disillusioned with mainstream values and opinions. I was lost in terms of having a core set of values and I dealt with that by breaking all of the rules and partying as hard as I could and then eventually I discovered a left wing body of opinion that I could buy into and that was my found moment and sure enough I loved the social events that went with the politics but the politics came first, however if today's dance music scene had been around back then I think would have just stuck with that and I can't help wondering if that scene has swallowed up some really good young activists?

And then there's the motivation. To be an activist you really need a sense that something is wrong with the world and an anxious desire to fix those problems and I don't think that a weekend of clubbing is going to give you what you need to go out canvassing on a cold winter's night in the middle of the week, that blissed out after glow can make you very lazy and if you're having loads of lost weekends you won't have the time anyway.

The success of consumerism's digital entertainment industries definitely blunts people's understanding of their political environment because they are being constantly entertained and they simply don't have the mental space or time to consider those issues and I suppose you can see things like dance music and computer gaming as very successful, compelling parts of that industry and any kind of popular radicalism needs to find a way through that.

The 'inner space' thing has real value and I'm not going to stop going out, I need my hedonistic fix just like anyone else does :D but my new year's resolution will be to get stuck into some serious campaigning.
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