Thats the question posed in Empire of Dirt (Wesleyan University Press), a new anthropologic approach to underground, do-it-yourself music scenes.
The books author, Wendy Fonarow, earned a Ph.D. in Cultural Anthropology from UCLA by spending the 1990s immersed in the independent music circles of the U.K.
She says the musicians and scenesters of England inspired her theory that the indie aesthetic is a modern form of puritanism.
According to Fonarow, In indie circles, its much more democratized, even the girls who hang around these scenes are not groupies, they are considered performers in the art itself.
She adds: To be called a groupie in that scene is to be labeled a hack.
Empire of Dirt hits bookshelves in July.
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