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dc.contributor.authorBennett, Andy
dc.contributor.editorWeston, D
dc.contributor.editorBennett, A
dc.description.abstractThe counter-culture of the late 1960s and early 1970s is typically represented as a global youth cultural phenomenon that casts itself in opposition to the technocracy of Western capitalist society. Central to this oppositional stance was a rejection of mainstream societal values which, in addition to the core ideologies of industrial capitalism itself, also extended to associated institutions - notably marriage, the nuclear family and organized religion. Although, the term "counter-culture" actually encompasses a wide range of quite diverse groups and interests (Clecal, 1983), and although the opposi­tional nature of the counter-culture frequently has been romanticized and misrepresented, there is little doubt that the counter-cultural era brought with it an openness to alternative ideologies, spiritualities and aesthetic beliefs, many of which continue to manifest themselves in current youth cultures and music scenes (A. Bennett 2001). A key aspect of the counter-culture's oppositional stance was its drawing on ideas and practices associated with pre-modern ideology, including elements of Paganism. Among these was a back-to-the-land ethos exemplified in the rural hippie communes that sprang up across North America and Europe; this was also evident at some counter-cultural rock festivals - notably the 1969 Woodstock Music and Art Fair, which took place at a greenfield site in upper New York state (see A. Bennett 2004). As the example of Woodstocic suggests, significant elements of the counter-cultural ideology were communicated through the popular music of the era, and this extended to the.traces of Pagan belief evident in the counter-culture. A range of artists, from The Beatles, Canned Heat and Traffic through to emerging hard rock and heavy metal groups such as Black Sabbath and Led Zeppelin, drew on imagery with varying degrees of Pagan influence. This chapter discusses the role of music in articulating aspects of Pagan belief and ideology among members of the counter-culture. As the chapter will illustrate, rather than articulating the full-blown form of Paganism evident in much contemporary Pagan music, counter-cultural music drew loosely on a range of themes and imagery whose Pagan associations were not directly articulated but rather worked at a variety of levels as a means of challenging the dominant technocratic discourse of the time. Pagan overtones were also evident in a variety of objects, images and texts associated with the music of the counter-cultural era. The chapter will argue that this music served as an important impetus for counter-cultural sensibilities, with the latter drawing inspiration and nourishment from pre- and anti­-modern customs and practices within which Paganism played a significant, if not specifically explored, role.
dc.publisher.placeUnited Kingdom
dc.relation.ispartofbooktitlePop Pagans: Paganism and Popular Music
dc.subject.fieldofresearchSociology not elsewhere classified
dc.titlePaganism and the Counter-Culture
dc.typeBook chapter
dc.type.descriptionB1 - Chapters
dc.type.codeB - Book Chapters
gro.facultyArts, Education & Law Group, School of Humanities, Languages and Social Sciences
gro.hasfulltextNo Full Text
gro.griffith.authorBennett, Andy A.

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