PUNK CULTURE

Not just a mere music genre, Punk evolved into a whole subculture with its own distinctive fashion look that clearly identified its following. Again the political environment of conformism and early Tory Britain contributed to Punk fashion success and clearly expressed the desire for individuality and rebellion. Hailed designers Malcolm McLaren and Vivienne Westwood were to strongly influence the fashion movement with their bold designs. Torn t-shirts with offensive slogans and the safety pin were to become classic emblems of the era alongside the unique hair and makeup design to shock and cause outrage. 

Piercings, tattoos and multicoloured Mohawks were soon to become a signature look for the fan. Most fans would describe themselves as outcasts due to their political beliefs and disenchantment with society and through the music and fashion they had found a way to express their individuality and find a niche for themselves. 

Substance abuse was often referred to in the music and did become synonymous with the genre, glue sniffing especially, the reason for this often being given that faith in the future had died and that the youth just didn’t care anymore. In the UK 1970’s there was a very big awareness of the threat of nuclear war and a pervasive sense of doom infiltrated society and is claimed by some to have been a powerful influencing factor in the ‘whats the point’ attitude. 

Far from being the violent yobs that the media often portrayed, the ideological culture of punk held some very worthy beliefs such as anti-rascism, anti-sexism, anti-homophobia, vegetarianism and environmental protection.