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intothevoid
Metal newbie

Joined: Tue Mar 13, 2007 7:35 am
Posts: 74
Location: Antarctica
PostPosted: Sun Apr 06, 2008 9:07 am 
 

It's quite visible that something changed about 50 years ago within human nature. A culture spawned a new period of life, adolescence.
Not that adolescence had never been there before, but it was simply a passing point between childhood and maturity. A boy became a man at the age of 14, a girl became a woman at 12.
Now we see an entire side of civilization dedicated to adolescence, to the creation of individualism linked to the maturation of a person. It has become an important factor of economy, like the creation of health products for skin or even musical bands made to appeal to young teenagers.
The appearance of rock'n'roll music seems to have sparked a sense of rebel attitude within the adolescent community. Then, teenagers blew out of silence and founded their own loosely defined culture that still lasts to this day, spreading over vast amounts of musical genres and fashions.

What are your views on this subject ? Could we have done without early individualism ? Is metal part of this adolescent spawned culture, or does it pertain to another category of human development ?
Discuss.
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goatmanejy
Village Idiot

Joined: Sat Mar 22, 2008 12:38 am
Posts: 218
PostPosted: Sun Apr 06, 2008 10:03 am 
 

Well, induvidualism is very important culturally, since it leads to the eventual growth of countercultures and subcultures. I would say teenaged youth are where the center of culture is.
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Derigin
Anthropophagus

Joined: Sun Jan 01, 2006 6:25 am
Posts: 2647
Location: Canada
PostPosted: Sun Apr 06, 2008 2:31 pm 
 

Well, the processes leading to adolescence as a represented aspect of the life cycle have been slow and gradual in their implementation. The validity of a kid becoming a man at thirteen (at least in Western culture) has long since dwindled away as an absolute. It was much more needed in societies that had short life expectancies and were family orientated. It could even be argued that once the Industrial Revolution took off, the crave towards adolescence was already developing.

It is more prevalent in today's society that the adolescent represents both a market and a product. It is, in the sense, a prime target outside of the confines of influences during childhood. While the 60s and 70s were a revolt within the adolescent culture, the idea of such a culture has existed for quite some time. "Early adulthood" had its own expectations (socially, economic and otherwise) which were much more evident as a responsibility than as a novelty of 'growing up.' You could argue that today's adolescence do have less responsibility compared to their equivalent fore-bearers, though perhaps it's merely a change in responsibility that can be explained. No longer is it necessary to take on the full expectations of adulthood without some form of compensation.

So where does my view of metal fit into this?

Metal, as with its progenitor roots and other genres, does originate as a market to the adolescent - or at least to the younger over the older - but it's not merely confined to that one given aspect of the lifespan. I think if one was to argue the origins of specific genres - as in metal - it is necessary to look at culture as a whole, not merely the acclaimed culture of a superimposed subcultural social identity. Metal does originate and has spread from the "West" - from a trend that has expressed individualism, 'development' and 'progress.' On the whole, metal is a product of a culture of individualistic aims (as is so much else in the "West" culture). It is not merely confined to this culture, however, and has adapted and slowly infiltrated even the most collective of cultures with success.

This begs the question, does metal (or modern music in general) require individualism, 'development' or 'progress' to embrace it? Does it require adolescence? Is it correct to allude to human 'development' as an all enveloping cultural blanket, or would it be more appropriate to delve into the deeper argument as to what makes individuals and cultures unique and similar?

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NeglectedField
Onwards to Camulodunum!

Joined: Wed Aug 24, 2005 6:19 am
Posts: 1390
Location: United Kingdom
PostPosted: Sun Apr 06, 2008 7:02 pm 
 

Metal does have some roots in adolescence, as a subculture, but metal has always had a sensibility, or pretense, of adulthood about it. It more often deals with adult issues than a lot of other supposedly teenage subcultures. Not that many metal bands sing about teenage love affairs, really. Unless it ends up in some kind of gorefest or misogynistic display of power...
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