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The gothic subculture is at once a club scene, a fashion style, a mindset, and a way of life. It takes its name from GothicHorror, which inspired the usage of "gothic" to mean dark and gloomy, though creativity, individualism, and transgression are just as important to the subculture as darkness.

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The gothic subculture is at once a club scene, a fashion style, a mindset, and a way of life. Which of these is most essential for being goth is well, [[BrokenBase controversial]]. It takes its name from GothicHorror, which inspired the usage of "gothic" to mean dark and gloomy, though creativity, individualism, and transgression are just as important to the subculture as darkness.



Many of the early goth bands originated in the UK, but the subculture became quite active in the clubs and bars of Los Angeles in the 1980's, heavily influencing Hollywood's portrayal of the subculture. Inspired by GlamRock as well as PostPunk, scene members dressed in elaborate, gloomy, getups blending Victorian and punk aesthetics.

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Many of the early goth bands originated in the UK, but the subculture became quite active in the clubs and bars of Los Angeles in the 1980's, heavily influencing Hollywood's portrayal of the subculture. Inspired by GlamRock as well as PostPunk, scene members dressed in elaborate, gloomy, getups get ups blending Victorian and punk aesthetics.

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The gothic subculture is at once a club scene, a fashion style, a mindset, and a way of life. It takes its name from GothicHorror, which inspired the usage of "gothic" to mean dark and gloomy, though creativity, individualism, and transgression are just as important to the subculture as darkness.

The gothic subculture emerged in the late 70's with the rise of GothRock, which emerged from PostPunk in the UK. Early influential bands include Music/{{Bauhaus}}, Music/TheSistersOfMercy, Music/FieldsOfTheNephilim, and Music/TheCure as well as include Music/JoyDivision, Music/SiouxsieAndTheBanshees (with Siouxsie Sioux a major fashion inspiration for gothic women even now), Music/AdamAndTheAnts (like Siouxsie Sioux, Adam Ant was a major influence on gothic fashion), and Music/KillingJoke. Like PostPunk, GothRock and the goth subculture was an offshoot and comment on PunkRock, and even today the scenes are often intertwined.

Many of the early goth bands originated in the UK, but the subculture became quite active in the clubs and bars of Los Angeles in the 1980's, heavily influencing Hollywood's portrayal of the subculture. Inspired by GlamRock as well as PostPunk, scene members dressed in elaborate, gloomy, getups blending Victorian and punk aesthetics.

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%%* Don't be surprised to learn that some goths enjoy ClassicalMusic, especially ones involving piano or violin pieces. Many of the songs can be gloomy, triumphant, or potentially inspiring, which many goths can relate to at times. This is the same reason why many enjoy blues, gospel, and early country - there's a lot of contrasting emotion to be found in all of those genres.
A handy guide to different (stereo)types of goths can be found [[http://www.blackwaterfall.com/viewall.php here.]]

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%%* Don't be surprised to learn that some goths enjoy ClassicalMusic, especially ones involving piano or violin pieces. Many of the songs can be gloomy, triumphant, or potentially inspiring, which many goths can relate to at times. This is the same reason why many enjoy blues, gospel, and early country - there's a lot of contrasting emotion to be found in all of those genres.
A handy guide to different (stereo)types of goths can be found [[http://www.blackwaterfall.com/viewall.php here.]]
genres.


* Since gothic rock and post-punk are both musical genres that often explore pain, death, and suffering, many people with trauma in their lives can feel drawn to the music and the subculture. Goths have also been shown scientifically to have a slightly higher level of mental illness than the general population; however this is still a minority of members of the subculture. No violent crime has ever been connected to the true, non-Marilyn Manson goth scene.
* Goths may be seen as eccentric. This probably has something to do with liking a few somewhat obscure genres of music to the point of obsessively identifying themselves with those genres. There are likely many more goths in fandoms in relation to the total population than in "mainstream society;" however since goths are not space aliens the fandoms that they do enjoy are not likely to be different from ones popular outside of goth, except for maybe Tim Burton films.
* Goths are usually in it for the long haul; that is, they are generally not "in a phase." Individuality being valued means that many goths have a strong sense of self. Goths know who they are, what they listen to, what they read, and how they dress, and they aren't likely to change completely; they may simply "bend the rules" and express themselves as they choose within set guidelines (example: dressing in black clothing with an ankh pendant at work, but still not violating the dress code).
* Don't be surprised to learn that some goths enjoy ClassicalMusic, especially ones involving piano or violin pieces. Many of the songs can be gloomy, triumphant, or potentially inspiring, which many goths can relate to at times. This is the same reason why many enjoy blues, gospel, and early country - there's a lot of contrasting emotion to be found in all of those genres.

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* %%* Since gothic rock and post-punk are both musical genres that often explore pain, death, and suffering, many people with trauma in their lives can feel drawn to the music and the subculture. Goths have also been shown scientifically to have a slightly higher level of mental illness than the general population; however this is still a minority of members of the subculture. No violent crime has ever been connected to the true, non-Marilyn Manson goth scene.
* %%* Goths may be seen as eccentric. This probably has something to do with liking a few somewhat obscure genres of music to the point of obsessively identifying themselves with those genres. There are likely many more goths in fandoms in relation to the total population than in "mainstream society;" however since goths are not space aliens the fandoms that they do enjoy are not likely to be different from ones popular outside of goth, except for maybe Tim Burton films.
* %%* Goths are usually in it for the long haul; that is, they are generally not "in a phase." Individuality being valued means that many goths have a strong sense of self. Goths know who they are, what they listen to, what they read, and how they dress, and they aren't likely to change completely; they may simply "bend the rules" and express themselves as they choose within set guidelines (example: dressing in black clothing with an ankh pendant at work, but still not violating the dress code).
* %%* Don't be surprised to learn that some goths enjoy ClassicalMusic, especially ones involving piano or violin pieces. Many of the songs can be gloomy, triumphant, or potentially inspiring, which many goths can relate to at times. This is the same reason why many enjoy blues, gospel, and early country - there's a lot of contrasting emotion to be found in all of those genres.

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* The gothic subculture began with a certain genre of music, which we now recognize as GothRock but was originally considered no different than other PostPunk. As such, listening to both goth rock and some post-punk is a basic requirement for participation within the subculture. Examples of goth rock bands include Music/{{Bauhaus}}, Music/TheSistersOfMercy, Music/FieldsOfTheNephilim, and Music/TheCure. Post-punk bands popular with goths include Music/JoyDivision, Music/SiouxsieAndTheBanshees (Siouxsie Sioux being a major fashion inspiration for gothic women even now), Music/AdamAndTheAnts (like Siouxsie Sioux, Adam Ant was a major influence on gothic fashion), and Music/KillingJoke. Many other genres of music are popular in the goth scene as well, including DarkWave, Deathrock, Ethereal, [[NewWaveMusic New Wave]], SynthPop, Coldwave, Horror Punk, GothicMetal, GlamRock, Dark Cabaret, {{Industrial}} (and sometimes IndustrialMetal), Neofolk, ClassicalMusic, and sometimes jazz, blues, gospel, and traditional country and folk. Examples of bands from these other genres can be found on last.fm or Website/{{Google}}. Certain other groups are sometimes seen as being goth, such as Music/MarilynManson or Music/{{Evanescence}}, but these bands do not have a clear musical connection to the two essential genres and are therefore not goth (and should also generally not be brought up around most goths).
* Goth is not a religious thing, but a secular youth culture based on a shared taste in music, books, and some fashion much like The Mods of the 1960s. However, one of the things that is very goth is open-mindedness. Therefore, people such as [[UsefulNotes/NeoPaganism Neopagans]] and yes, even [[UsefulNotes/{{Satanism}} Satanists]] found themselves drawn into the creation of the early scene as they often felt like outsiders in "normal" society, and are still prevalent today. This can lead to nasty stereotyping that all goths are "devil worshippers"; however this is still a rather small minority of goths. Despite these people being a minority, their presence is one of the things that make the modern scene as distinct and colourful as it is. The "open minded" part of being goth has also lead to the subculture having a higher than average number of gay, queer, agender/nonbinary, or trans individuals, neurodivergent folks, and UsefulNotes/{{BDSM}} enthusiasts.
* Goths are likely to be artistic; there are many who take an artful pride in their wardrobe, in making music related to their subculture, or any other creative field. Although it is very rare, however, non-artistic goths can still exist. Goths tend to value individuality and thinking differently, and this is where the distinctive wardrobe comes in. Black is the most popular colour of clothing in the scene, but many other colours are used, and back in 1978 (the year goth was born) when people complained about the "depressing wardrobe" of Joy Division fans they were complaining about grey, not black. Spooky clothing is popular, as is avant-garde fashion, ElegantGothicLolita ([[UsefulNotes/LolitaFashion and related styles]]) and DIY PunkRock clothing and haircuts. That being said, individuality is important; dressing to the nines 24/7 is not, which is why the "white collar/corporate goth" who prefers darker-colored work clothing and maybe sneaks in an ankh pendant is a stereotype. And because of the emphasis on creativity, there are several clothing tropes commonly embodied by gothic fashionistas. The most common are: ImpracticallyFancyOutfit, OfCorsetsSexy, and, of course, PimpedOutDress. Applies equally to male and female outfits.
* Since gothic rock and post-punk are both musical genres that often explore pain, death, and suffering, many people with trauma in their lives can feel drawn to the music and the subculture. Goths have also been shown scientifically to have a slightly higher level of mental illness than the general population; however this is still a minority of members of the subculture. No violent crime has ever been connected to the true, non-Marilyn Manson goth scene.
* Goths may be seen as eccentric. This probably has something to do with liking a few somewhat obscure genres of music to the point of obsessively identifying themselves with those genres. There are likely many more goths in fandoms in relation to the total population than in "mainstream society;" however since goths are not space aliens the fandoms that they do enjoy are not likely to be different from ones popular outside of goth, except for maybe Tim Burton films.
* Goths are usually in it for the long haul; that is, they are generally not "in a phase." Individuality being valued means that many goths have a strong sense of self. Goths know who they are, what they listen to, what they read, and how they dress, and they aren't likely to change completely; they may simply "bend the rules" and express themselves as they choose within set guidelines (example: dressing in black clothing with an ankh pendant at work, but still not violating the dress code).
* Don't be surprised to learn that some goths enjoy ClassicalMusic, especially ones involving piano or violin pieces. Many of the songs can be gloomy, triumphant, or potentially inspiring, which many goths can relate to at times. This is the same reason why many enjoy blues, gospel, and early country - there's a lot of contrasting emotion to be found in all of those genres.
A handy guide to different (stereo)types of goths can be found [[http://www.blackwaterfall.com/viewall.php here.]]

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