Degree Name

MA (Master of Arts)



Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Elwood Watson

Committee Members

John Rankin, Henry Antkiewicz


The chief argument of this work rests on the idea that culture-blindness—especially White ethnic-cultural blindness—contributed as much as issues of race to the heavily documented social rift between predominantly Chicanx, Eastside punk and the mostly-White, Westside punk rock communities of Los Angeles, 1976-1981. To date, historical blame for the divide has centered on racism, including racist intent. The second area of analysis directly relates to the first in that it demonstrates the inextricable link between cultural and spatial identity formation and assignment among the various scenes. This aspect of the study evaluates the complaints of some Eastside acts who have contended that based on racist attitude(s), they were prohibited from playing in Westside venues, thereby limiting their opportunities for gaining notoriety in the industry overall. This evaluation attempts to weigh the validity of that complaint against other determinative, influential aspects of the entire punk phenomenon. Lastly, through historically tracking the remnants of cultural Chicanismo clear into L.A.’s first and succeeding punk waves, this work analyzes the art of protest, and the protest in art as applied to that city’s diverse punk aesthetics.

Document Type

Thesis - unrestricted


Copyright by the authors.

Included in

History Commons