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Identity Performance in British Rock and Indie Music : Authenticity, Stylization, and Glocalization


  • Christine Schulze

Summary, in English

This master’s thesis, departing from the work done by Peter Trudgill and Paul Simpson, aims at widening the scope of research on the identity performance of British rock and indie musicians by taking into account the influences and intersections of local and global social contexts. It not only analyzes the musicians’ accents but also focuses on their lyrics, music videos and statements in interviews. The different types of data are analyzed for references of place in relation to theories of discourse, stylization and authenticity. The thesis applies the concept of glocalization, which has been widely used in studies of hip hop music, to the genres rock and indie in order to explain how local and global forces influence discursive identity production, particularly in relation to popular culture. The first phase of the study is a lyrical analysis of five British bands. Based on the results of the first phase, three bands were chosen for in-depth multimodal discourse analysis in a second phase. Results show how the bands' identity performances were changed and (re)shaped over the course of their careers. The study reveals three different profiles of the approach to and the development of identity performance, highlighting the importance of individuality in the face of mass media. In all, with respect to methodology, the study illustrates the benefit of discourse-analytic case study for the investigation of identity performance by musical artists.


Publishing year




Document type

Student publication for Master's degree (two years)


  • Languages and Literatures


  • Francis Hult (Docent)