"You're an American rapper, so what do you know?" The political uses of British and US popular culture by first-time voters in the UK

J. Street, S. Inthorn

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2 Citations (Scopus)


This paper addresses the question of whether and how contemporary forms of popular culture engage young people with the wider world, in particular with respect to the formation of their political identity. Drawing on the result of focus groups and interviews with seventeen-to-eighteen-year-olds, it examines how regional, national and global identities emerge in talk about US and UK popular culture. This empirical focus is set against the background of existing research into the various dimensions of popular culture's relationship to politics. The authors conclude that popular culture can act as a device in the construction of collective, political identities, albeit indirectly, by way of young people's assessment of the source, authenticity and legitimacy of multiple media representations.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)471-484
Number of pages14
JournalNew Political Science
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2010

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