Punk and Pedagogy in Geography

Authors: Tyler Sonnichsen*, University of Tennessee
Topics: Cultural Geography, Social Geography, Urban Geography
Keywords: music, punk, pedagogy
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/13/2018
Start / End Time: 8:00 AM / 9:40 AM
Room: Oakley, Sheraton, 4th Floor
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


Although the intersection between underground music and geography has been increasingly explored by academics and journalists alike over the past two decades, the pedagogical potential of case studies around punk, hardcore, and other musical subcultures has gotten little attention. My dissertation research observed the circulation of punk culture between Washington, DC and Paris, supporting a newer circulation-based model for understanding musical geography. Over my first year of full-time instruction, I have implemented case studies pulled from or inspired by my dissertation work within curricula for multiple geography classes with largely positive and accruing results.

One case study expanded upon here will include Dischord Records as exemplar of the relationship between urban geography and underground scenes, which has been applied to curricula in both core concepts courses in cultural geography as well as upper-division courses in Popular Culture. Another case study focuses on hardcore punk in Indonesia as geographically specific mechanism for rebellion and local opportunities for resistance, which has been included in World Regional Geography curricula on Southeast Asia. Another will include the use of the Parisian hardcore scene to study urban counter-narratives in curricula focused on European Geography, using it to teach the city's landscape as well as prevailing social issues.

All of these case studies suggest greater possibilities for the application of locally oriented music scenes and wider underground movements within geography curricula.

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