Youth Subcultures

Marxism, Neo-Marxism and Youth

The Centre for Contemporary Cultural Studies (CCCS) based at Birmingham University produced a range of influential work on youth subcultures in the 1960s and 1970s that is largely regarded as ‘Neo-Marxist’ (being influenced by more recent Marxist thinkers such as Gramsci).

This work recognises that members of youth subcultures face the same experiences and conditions as the social class they are from. Hence, the formation of the subculture can be seen as a reaction to these conditions (that is to say, their class-based disempowerment). There were many social issues facing young people in Britain in the 1960s and 1970s so, to appreciate the work that was produced by the CCCS, students could spend some time looking at issues such as unemployment, racial tensions and strikes. A range of material on the 1970s strikes and the 3 day week can be found online, and this material could be used to inform individual research reports by students: Video from Leeds Museum: see above BBC News material:

Discover More Your 1970s: Strikes and blackouts

The National Archives:

Discover More 1960s and 1970s Radicalisation


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