Brutal belonging in Melbourne's grindcore scene

Studies in Symbolic Interaction

ISBN: 978-0-85724-361-4, eISBN: 978-0-85724-362-1

ISSN: 0163-2396

Publication date: 30 September 2010


Through an ethnography of Melbourne's grindcore death-metal scene, I examine how belonging in a music scene is constituted by scene members’ affective encounters. In particular, I suggest that a “brutal” disposition is necessary for cultivating the affective intensities necessary for experiencing belonging in the scene. Using scene members’ own understandings of “brutal” I shift from iconic representations of “brutality,” common in other metal scenes, toward a brutal affect. Here, brutality is experienced as a set of embodied intensities, difficult to articulate, but crucial to understanding how scene members cultivate belonging – in the grindcore scene, and in scenic spaces.


Overell, R. (2010), "Brutal belonging in Melbourne's grindcore scene", Denzin, N. (Ed.) Studies in Symbolic Interaction (Studies in Symbolic Interaction, Vol. 35), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 79-99.

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