Green Day and Urbanism

by caseypeterson

“Much as I wouldn’t have gotten into real punk if I hadn’t listened to Green Day, I wouldn’t be so excited about walking down real city streets had I not walked down a fake city street first.” -Dan Reed, Planning Graduate Student, Blogger

I came across Reed’s article that equates Green Day’s relationship to punk rock with generic urban spaces. The planning school student talks about how he explored the Washingtonian Center in Gaithersburg, Maryland as a teen. The development may not have been “authentic,” but it provided him with the tools to understand what made city spaces work. Similarly, his teen obsession with Green Day was a gateway into more “legitimate” punk rock bands, ones you can find performing in grungy back alley clubs rather than in sports stadiums. For me, the take away point here is that authenticity has the tendency be a privileged pursuit, and one must not underestimate the merit of the more accessible and often generic pieces and places of our culture. Ultimately, it is up to the consumer to decide if he or she wants to remain within the generic world or use the accessible as gateways into the more esoteric. But again, these pursuits require time and effort, the currency of the privileged.

You can read the original article here: