Mapping out Liberating Traces of the Fun of Undisciplined Play: A Search for an Alternative Aesthetic in Graffiti

Authors

  • Sohaib Alam Department of English, College of Sciences and Humanities in Alkharj, Prince Sattam bin Abdulaziz University Abdullah Bin Amer Street, 16278, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia https://orcid.org/0000-0002-9972-9357
  • Farhan Ahmad Department of English Studies,Faculty of Indian and Foreign Languages, Akal University Talwandi Sabo, 151302, Punjab, India https://orcid.org/0000-0001-5710-7800
  • Sadaf Khalid University Institute of Liberal Arts and Humanities (UILAH), Chandigarh University 140413, Mohali, Punjab, India
  • Shubhi Akal Academy Baru Sahib, Abohar, 152116, Punjab, India https://orcid.org/0000-0003-2159-6715

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.15503/jecs2022.2.549.564

Keywords:

graffiti, popular, popular culture, popular resistance, power, space

Abstract

Aim. The present study primarily engages with graffiti as a tactic of the weak who find pleasure in scandalising the dominant discourse. The prime focus here will be on the pleasure as resistance, on the construction of an alternative space into the dominant space, and on the multiple forms of evasive and resisting techniques through which the subordinate asserts their power. Thus, Graffiti can be read as a popular text, a signifying construct of potential meanings and pleasures for the subordinate.

Concept. Conceptualised as the undisciplined play of the subordinate people that resists or evades hegemonic forces and a radical reimagining of the neo-liberal spaces, Graffiti has become a major expression of popular culture in recent times. The paper uses many such stances where the lateral thinking of the power helps to challenge the disciplinary discourses of the dominant.

Results and Conclusion. The paper offers a popular reading of graffiti that opens up the way to escape control, scandalise top-down power and to assert bottom-up power at the micro-level. The real pleasure lies in scandalising the dominant discourse. Graffiti is read here as self-assertion of the marginalised who acquire public visibility and power through graffiti creation.

Originality. The originality of the study depends on reviewing the manipulative actions of people in everyday lives and how this undisciplined play provides them with the opportunity to subvert the system and to escape social control. It supports the idea that the subordinate possesses transgressive deviation in relation to the everyday continuum.

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Author Biographies

  • Sohaib Alam, Department of English, College of Sciences and Humanities in Alkharj, Prince Sattam bin Abdulaziz University Abdullah Bin Amer Street, 16278, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

    Currently working as an Assistant Professor of English at the Department of English, College of Science and Humanities, Prince Sattam bin Abdulaziz University, Saudi Arabia. He holds a Ph.D. in English Language Teaching (ELT) from Aligarh Muslim University, India. His areas of interest are Applied Linguistics, Pragmatics, Teaching Methods, Blended Learning, and Pedagogic Theory. He has presented papers at both national and international conferences, published research articles and papers in various indexed journals. He has been teaching English for over 3 years.

  • Farhan Ahmad, Department of English Studies,Faculty of Indian and Foreign Languages, Akal University Talwandi Sabo, 151302, Punjab, India

    Assistant professor at the Department of English Studies, Faculty of Indian and Foreign Language, Akal University, Punjab, India. His research interests include performance studies, modern European drama, cultural studies, gender studies and ESL/EFL pedagogy. 

  • Sadaf Khalid, University Institute of Liberal Arts and Humanities (UILAH), Chandigarh University 140413, Mohali, Punjab, India

    Sadaf Khalid is working as Assistant Professor  at School of Commerce and Management, IIMT University, Meerut, India. She completed her graduation in Political Science from Women's College and gold medalist in public administration for her Master's program from AMU, Aligarh. She and writes for an online news platform ‘Eastern Herald.’ Her area of interest lies in Indian political affairs, public policy, Woman Representation and Empowerment, public sector management and local governance.

  • Shubhi, Akal Academy Baru Sahib, Abohar, 152116, Punjab, India

    Ms. Shubhi teaches English at Akal Academy Abohar, Punjab, India. Her areas of intereset are cultural studies and popular literature.

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Published

2022-09-27

How to Cite

Alam, S. ., Ahmad, F., Khalid, S. ., & Shubhi. (2022). Mapping out Liberating Traces of the Fun of Undisciplined Play: A Search for an Alternative Aesthetic in Graffiti. Journal of Education Culture and Society, 13(2), 549-564. https://doi.org/10.15503/jecs2022.2.549.564

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