chapter  1
18 Pages

From subculture to sceneness

WithStefano Barone

The chapter offers a theoretical incipit to the book. It collocates the analysis of Tunisian scenes within the debate on youth subcultures and post-subcultures. The first section briefly goes through such a debate: it delineates the traits of early definitions of subculture and explains how subsequent generations of scholars challenged such a framework. The following section exposes the “west-centric” limits of the subculture/post-subculture debate. It identifies the main challenges and opportunities in using concepts such as “subculture”, “lifestyle”, or “music scene” to describe a global south context. The chapter then focuses on what will be the main framework used in the book: music scenes. It analyses the debate on scenes, which have been praised for their conceptual flexibility and, at the same time, despised as a vague category. In order to overcome such vagueness, and to enhance the concept’s usefulness in the case of Tunisia, the chapter reworks the scene framework through the concepts of fragility and sceneness.