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Subculture: Greasers Essay

Greasers originated in the early 1950’s increasingly popular toward the 1960’s. They originated in the young northeaster and southern united states street gangs and changed rapidly unto other type of individuals. Initially it arose from working class families that didn’t have access to the greatest educational resources. They existed before gangs were dependent on violence and drugs.

The greasers of the 1950s took their name from the “Greaser Act” which was a law created in California against Mexicans to protect Californians from Mexicans who were unarmed, but not peaceful or quiet people. The name “Greaser” was given to the Mexicans that greased carts, in the mid-1800s; this job was one of the worst jobs that anyone could have, which made the name “Greaser” one of utmost disrespect. They adopted the name “greaser” also from the greased back hairstyle they have which they associated with the idea of rebellion.

Many believe that this rebellious attitude came from the fact that the 1950s was a time of suppressed libido (sexual desire or drive) , due to the recovery from the war (world war 2). A lot of stars also have a direct effects as icons in many greaser groups on the subculture such as Elvis with his pompadour hair and attitude. The term greaser also reappeared in later decades as part of a revival of 1950s popular culture. Values: Greased slick back hair, usually combed back with wax, gel, creams, tonics, or other hair products.

They take a lot of care for their hair and most carry combs. Fast pimped out cars/motorcycles with vinyls such as flames Rock Music such as Rock n roll,Rockabilly and Doo-wop Tattoos (optional) Loyal to their friends Dancing was also important to greasers as they enjoyed it. Dance at the time was mostly swing based but some changes. Dance was often viewed as a form of rebellion. Some teens sought out African American sources for new steps. They’d ask black classmates at school and dances (Hairspray).

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