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Urban Tribalism: From Gore Lolitas To Juggalo Furries

Topics: Lifestyle & Culture | 2 CommentsBy admin | November 8, 2009

If you thought Trekkies were scary, you ain’t seen nothin yet.

Before the white man came, the Americas were populated by hundreds, if not thousands (there are 749 listed here) of tribes that spread from the arctic circle to the tip of South America. Funny how things don’t change; although hundreds of indigenous tribes were wiped out by European colonization, hundreds of urban tribes have sprung up in their place. This is true all across the globe, actually; we tend to think of nations and ethnicities as the most useful way to categorize groups of people, but in fact, the enormous number of subcultures within a culture often have more enduring values that outlive the greater culture itself. In the states, we’re most familiar with the broader subcultures like Beatniks, Bikers, Hippies, and Punks, but there are dozens and dozens more that actually have names, and some of them of them are pret-ty darn peculiar. Many of the newer urban tribes are Internet or pop media driven; Furries, Cosplayers, and Trekkies all have sci-fi/fantasy roots, but wouldn’t exist without the web to connect them. I mean, c’mon. They only leave their computers long enough to order pizza and go to conventions, as far as I know. A breed that’s somehow oddly related to this bunch – Role Playing Gamers – seems to eschew fashion and looks for brains, but probably ends up standing in the same corner at a cocktail party. Then there are subcultures spawned by music, which brings us the more familiar Goths and Emos, but also meanders into the more obscure, like Juggalos (fans of the band Insane Clown Posse), or in a frightening collision of cultures, the Juggalo Furry. Which has been described as being “like a trainwreck raping a tire fire“. When this sort of music-inspired tribe evolves because of international media distribution, the urban tribe ends up being almost like a cargo cult, as in the case of the Argentinian Rolingos (inspired by the Rolling Stones), or the Congolese Hindubills (inspired by Buffalo Bill movies). And then it gets weird. Both the Swedish Raggare and the Chilean Pokemón use various pop music, movies, and games as reference points, but only as a weird vehicle for their respective countries’ versions of white trash public sex, street racing, and drinking. Imagine the hicks from your area dressing up like Pokemón and engaging in bisexual sex at the park, and you get the picture. And then there are the body image cults like body modders, and their more style-conscious counterparts like Wannarexics and Guro Lolitas. Researching all these subcultures has left me feeling like an outcast amongst outcasts, which has been the story of my life; even when I was labeled a punk in the seventies, the punks didn’t like me. I hated beer and thought slam dancing was dumb, so I ended up being more like “Rudolph the Rednosed Punk”. So at this point in my life, and given this rather compelling diversity of subcultures, how could I lay claim to being anything other than an Otherkin?

If you thought Trekkies were a little scary….

You’ve obviously never seen a Cosplayer:

And why is that with so many of these subcultures, you get the feeling there’s a trailer park nearby?

You may be wondering why “Furries” like to dress up like furry animals…

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  1. Posted by » Help Pick The Dissociated Press Best Of 2009 - Dissociated Press on 12.29.09 11:49 am

    [...] department, we introduced you to people you’ll probably never meet (or want to) like Gore Lolitas and Juggalo Furries, offered up some tips on running away to join the circus, and explained why it’s okay to take [...]

  2. Posted by I Was A Punk Before You Were A Punk Part I at dissociatedpress.com on 08.21.10 8:32 pm

    [...] a sort of anthropological fascination with contrived American urban tribes and subcultures like Gore Lolitas and Juggalo Furries, body modders, self-cutting emos, and most recently “Gutter Punks”. You may have [...]