EDMC, A Conflict of Identity

Date of Award


Document Type


First Advisor

Rebecca Overmyer-Velazquez


With the birth of electronic music, underground raves were born. Starting with a low populated following, rave events took place in warehouses, basements, or anywhere that would accept them, creating a subculture of followers to assimilate too, that being rave culture. Today we see electronic music events selling out stadiums and popular concert halls. Even though electronic music has grown into something much bigger today, rave culture finds itself being a classification of past EDM culture. We stand at a point of popularity in EDM wondering where rave culture ends or stops, and where a new era of following beings or starts. This study aims to identify the historical background of rave culture, and track its growth since then to compare difference between the two time periods. To further look into this, I analyzed personal participatory observational festival/show footage through an ethnographic lens to examine and analyze this culture, as well as conducted interviews with 2 experienced and 2 unexperienced people in the EDMC scene. Through my findings, I have been able to identify how rave culture has been identified as a particular period of time that EDM events occurred, and we see a new age of EDM events starting. EDMC has become much bigger than the underground birth of itself, with many reasons leading back to examples of common-consciousness, social identification, commercialization, and visual/physical sensation stimulation. This supports my finding through scholars who have identified the likeminded pleasure of the physical music, and crowd participation culture. We can gather that EDMC has grown much bigger, into an entire section itself of music, making it impossible to define as a particular aspect of physical or emotional assimilation, but instead being defined as the collective grouping of aspects that EDM now carries. Electronic Dance Music Culture.


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