By Suzanne McDonald-Walker
From The Wild Ones to effortless Rider, the bike has infected the imaginations of the media and most people alike. Marlon Brando, carrying leather-based jacket, denims, and moody glare, grew to become a cultural icon summing up 'the street' in all its maverick glory. yet does the parable of the renegade bike owner, an outcast from mainstream society who takes to the line in pursuit of freedom, correlate with fact in any significant approach? Who relatively rides bikes and why? What are the manager matters of motorcyclists and the way are those represented and contested within the political sphere?This ebook, in line with huge fieldwork among bikers and the bikers' rights circulate, overturns the ingrained prejudice that equates bikers with deviancy and explodes the myths emphasizing the rebellious and dysfuntional elements of cycling. in its place, the writer makes a speciality of what cycling capacity to these concerned - the rewards, the dangers, the addictiveness, but additionally the stigma and assaults at the cycling way of life. in line with the damaging imagery surrounding bikers and turning out to be legislative threats from Europe, bikers' rights institutions developed among the Nineteen Sixties and Nineteen Eighties within the united kingdom and Europe. the writer discusses the goals and achievements of those lobbies, and the way forward for motorcycling extra typically because it turns into stylish as a middle-aged, middle-class pursuit.
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Additional info for Bikers: Culture, Politics & Power
But we could never really prove that that happened. As such, there is a belief amongst motorcyclists that the moral panic over the mods and rockers, the main cause in this country of negative imagery towards bikers, was merely hyped-up by the media. The second rider quoted above, a selfconfessed rocker, tells us about the aftermath of events and, interestingly for our later discussion, how it affected him: We were regularly turned away from public houses locally because of that and, if we wanted a run out to Skegness, the police wouldn’t let us park on the promenade.
Different to mum and dad. So I think a rebel element started then which just wasn’t around pre-war. No-one ever thought of rebels on motorbikes. It was people on motorbikes. So, it became a minority thing and you had to be tough to have a motorbike. Nor is it to argue that the stereotype did not exist in real life. One national official from the British Motorcyclists’ Federation (BMF) recalls the 1970s and early 1980s: I wore the dirtiest, filthiest, rancid-ist jeans you could ever think of. My leather would walk around on its own almost.
To a great extent, you step back in time, you’re like the cowboy riding the range, and you’re looking out for Indians all of the time. Or the explorer, who’s going to the Arctic, and voluntarily exposes himself to risk, or the lone yachtsman, or any kind of yachtsman for that matter, going down to the Southern Ocean, and doing crazy things like that. . I think, these days, because life has become so comfortable, everything from running water to central heating, the human race, certainly in the West, finds discomfort almost as unacceptable as it finds danger.
Bikers: Culture, Politics & Power by Suzanne McDonald-Walker