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Kids’re Forming Bands: Making Meaning in Post-Punk

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As a critical category, post-punk is sufficiently diverse that its organizing principle is not to be found in its stylistic unity. As a set of musical styles, its organizing principle is not audible. Nonetheless, I propose that its core exemplars represent a coherent movement, in the art-historic sense. Within popular music, post-punk represents a shift away from punk’s romantic expressionism to a modernist commitment to use verbal-musical interplay for the expression of ideas, particularly the idea of democratization. As a working out of aesthetic theory, its commitments correspond closely to Immanuel Kant’s model of genius.

Keywords: Immanuel Kant; aesthetics; art; genius; post-punk; punk; style

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Minnesota State University Moorhead

Publication date: September 8, 2011

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  • Punk & Post-Punk is a journal for academics, artists, journalists and the wider cultural industries. Placing punk and its progeny at the heart of inter-disciplinary investigation, it is the first forum of its kind to explore this rich and influential topic in both historical and critical theoretical terms.
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