Pop, Politics and Urban Theology
DOI link for Pop, Politics and Urban Theology
Pop, Politics and Urban Theology book
In a media-saturated age, popular culture represents a messy and contradictory narrative of meaning that reaches into every corner of our lives. Blaring from cars, simmering in shops, accompanying adverts, floating from open windows, pop music provides urban societies with their beat-driven soundtrack. But does this soundtrack offer anything more than disposable three-minute bubble-gum pop? Tom Beaudoin suggests that it carries an existential significance in a post-religious age. It is a “surrogate clergy” for a generation that is unconvinced by the religious and political narratives of modernity.1 In this chapter I suggest that strands of conscientized urban pop music can hint at a fluid and provisional pattern of “bottom-up” urban social theory. This street-level picture complements and critiques the “top-down” insights explored in earlier chapters. It can offer new resources to cross-cultural urban theologies in the twenty-first century when woven together with the insights offered by the social theory of the academy in an integrated urban social theory.