OI! Portraits Of Skinhead Culture 1970 – 1990 - CVLT Nation
Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?


OI! Portraits Of Skinhead Culture 1970 – 1990

Skinhead with facial tattoo lifting up his top to reveal a 'skinhead on the cross' tattoo on his chest. (Photo by: PYMCA/UIG via Getty Images)

Via Mashable

The skinhead subculture first emerged in London in the mid-1960s, when a split developed among “mod” music fans.

While more affluent mods could afford the fashionable clothes, scooters and amphetamines that typified the subculture, working-class mods had to make due with with more functional attire.

These “hard mods” often lived in the same poor neighborhoods as Caribbean immigrants, exposing them to the fashions and sounds of soul, ska and reggae.

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

Finding more interest in black culture and music than the effete mod subculture, the hard mods adopted a uniform of work boots, short jeans or pants, simple shirts, suspenders and close-cropped hair. (Long hair was a liability in factory work and street fights.) They soon began referring to themselves as “skinheads.”

Skinhead culture faded in the early ‘70s, but revived as a response to the commercialization of punk at the end of the decade. At the same time, many skinheads became involved in far-right and racist politics.

Some factions of skinheads had previously been known to attack immigrants and gay people in addition to their usual brawling; now many were openly sporting swastikas and giving Nazi salutes.

By the mid-1980s, the term “skinhead” had become synonymous with neo-Nazism, fascism and xenophobia.

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

Today a few organizations, such as Skinheads Against Racial Prejudice, are attempting to fight back against white supremacist skinheads and honor the multicultural origins of the subculture.


Spotted on Dangerous Minds


Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.
Written By



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Relapse Nothing
Dead Register

If you like this post and want to see more, help keep us going!

Sentient 112217
Black Matter Mastering

You May Also Like


Interview by Sam Wood from Infinite Regression zine (IG @infiniteregressionzine) First off, briefly describe how you all got involved in punk, I know you’ve all...


Music has always been an escape for me. As a child, I discovered that a song could speak to me in a language beyond...


Growing up in the ’80s, I remember looking at books about skinhead culture at my local book store in Venice. I was instantly intrigued...


I’ve been waiting all my life for the world to change. As a child, I remember sitting with my dad’s work colleagues at a...