Underground Impulses: Czechoslovak non-official musicking from 1968-1989
Sociology & Philosophy University of Exeter Exeter, United Kingdom
This paper examines the ways in which underground music produced, perpetuated, and preserved a community in post-1968 Czechoslovakia by placing itself within a narrative of Czech resistance. By appropriating myth, imagery, literature, and figures of Czech cultural history via performance, I argue that the underground musicians were able to reframe stigmatization from official media outlets of the neo-Stalinist regime. The research seeks to understand how these cultural resources of resistance, synthesized with international musical/artistic movements, created ?alternative structures? by exemplar for individuals to learn how to live non-official, underground, or alternative lifestyles. The music examined illustrates how it brought forth new modes of consciousness congruent to shifts in composition, performance, and audience of normalized Czechoslovak society from 1968-1989.