Boy bands and the performance of pop masculinity

Publication Type:



New York ; Routledge, United States, p.1 online resource (2019)

Call Number:




Boy bands., History and criticism., Masculinity in music., Popular music


Includes bibliographical references and index.Definitions: what constitutes a boy band? -- From barbershop to mainstream pop -- Constructing the product -- Marketing and promotion -- Weapons of mass-seduction: performing pop masculinity -- Fandom, texts, and practices -- Breaking up, making up, and moving on.Boy Bands and the Performance of Pop Masculinity provides a history of the boy band from the Beatles to One Direction, placing the modern male pop group within the wider context of twentieth- and twenty-first-century popular music and culture. Offering the first extended look at pop masculinity as exhibited by boy bands, this volume links the evolving expressions of gender and sexuality in the boy band to wider economic and social changes that have resulted in new ways of representing what it is to be a man. The popularity of boy bands is unquestionable, and their contributions to popular music are significant, yet they have attracted relatively little study. This book fills that gap with chapters exploring the challenges of defining the boy band phenomenon, its origins and history from the 1940s to the present, the role of management and marketing, the performance of gender and sexuality, and the nature of fandom and fan agency. Throughout, the author illuminates the ways in which identity politics influence the production and consumption of pop music and shows how the mainstream pop of boy bands can both reinforce and subvert gender and class hierarchies.Georgina Gregory is Senior Lecturer for Film and Media at the University of Central Lancashire, where she teaches modules on popular music and youth culture. She is the author of Send in the Clones: A Cultural Study of the Tribute Band.Online resource; title from digital title page (viewed on April 10, 2019).