Rave Culture

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Raves and a Drug Cultured Identity

Society has been greatly influenced by lifestyles, ideologies, and perceptions involving popular music and contemporary culture. We are all influenced by the values and ideologies that DJ’s and artists produce in each genre of music. I have recently noticed that electronic music has become extremely popular among University of Washington students. The growing reputation of this electronic music has lead to an increasing population of ‘rave’ culture. A rave is characterized by “a party atmosphere designed to enhance a hallucinogenic experience through music and behavior, which consists of an all-night dance session at a club or party, accompanied by the ingestion of recreational drugs” (“Rave Culture”). It is important to study rave culture because it is an “experience good” where the musical experience is enhanced by drugs and material elements. In this essay I will argue that rave culture is inspired by a drug culture identity that creates a cultural phenomenon that could not exist without drugs. I will use Kellner’s cultural study method to display how the production of a rave is influential in minimizing class inequalities. Drug use at a rave is apparent as the consumer whiteness’s bizarre interactions throughout a rave. Concertgoers communicate through their senses, massaging, touching and hugging each other, while vibes to the music inspire their interactions. Every sense of inhibition is lost, creating a passive environment where virtually anything nonviolent and peaceful becomes socially acceptable. Verbal communication is difficult in rave culture, and interaction often occurs with little or no discourse. It is a high-context culture where the meaning and cultural identity lies within the physical environment. The cultural identity would be nothing without recreational drugs that create a perception of timeless space and an altered sense of reality. Kellner uses textual analysis to explain the central meanings,...
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