Gender and musical subcultures in Japan

Authored by: Rosemary Overell

The Routledge Companion to Gender and Japanese Culture

Print publication date:  December  2019
Online publication date:  December  2019

Print ISBN: 9781138895201
eBook ISBN: 9781315179582
Adobe ISBN:


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This chapter addresses gender and musical subcultures in Japan. The author considers the usefulness of hegemonic approaches to subcultures to the Japanese context. The chapter accounts for broader discussions of how musical subcultures are addressed in Japan and focuses on four key sites: hip hop, mod, reggae/dancehall, and metal and punk. The author suggests that work in this area shows how women subculturalists push against gendered norms—in Japanese subcultural circulation and in dominant Japanese culture—in often novel and radical ways. The chapter ends with a provocation about how signifiers of Japanese subculture (particularly regarding hip-hop) have been taken up in the Western context as a means for destabilising Western masculinities.

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