Raves Essay, Research Paper
PLUR is a raver?s motto. It stands for peace, love, unity, and respect. First of all, a rave is a social event, ?a phenomenon of modern youth culture? (Brown & Behlandorf 4). In most cases, a rave is a dance party in which the ravers experience a sense of community and elevated consciousness through the listening to music, dancing, a positive mood, and the presence of many different kinds of people (4). Ravers are usually known as happy people that are always looking for a good time, although some say that today?s raves and ravers are all about the negative part of these all night dance parties, which they are not. Ravers will usually describe themselves as ?hippies of the nineties? (Laughinghouse & Owen 2). Ravers are all accepting, not discriminating, and they use rave as alternative fun without the use of drugs.
Raves today take place in warehouses, open fields, dance clubs, or other exotic locations. Skilled disk jockeys, colorful lights, and lasers/strobes are items that are looked for in a rave. Raves usually last from all hours of the night until sunrise (Brown & Behlendorf 2). At these raves there is the selling of non-alcoholic drinks called smart drinks, t-shirts, and DJ?s mixed tapes.
The most important articles in a rave are the ravers themselves. Ravers are known for their ?retro and little kid fashions? (Robbs 1). A raver can be either male or female, although the Addiction Research Foundation?s 1995 Ontario Student Drug Use Survey questioned those students that attend raves and they found out that the majority of their students attending raves are males. The age of these ravers varies on where the rave is. Ages range from thirteen to fifty, and a raver may or may not be heterosexual. Majority of people attending raves are college students (Brown & Behlendorf 6). Some ravers might use raves as ?weekend excursions? from their hectic and stressful home and school lives (Brown & Behlendorf 6).
Some raves may have up to 20,000 ?peace loving? kids, carrying every kind of body piercing, sucking on pacifiers, waving glowsticks, and hugging. At first glance, a crowd of ravers can look pretty freakish, but these are all just mainstream kids (Laughinghouse & Owen 1). A raver is typically a young person wearing baggy or extremely tight clothes, logo t-shirts and carrying some form of a backpack (Ruiz 6). Ravers also have glitter and stickers and their faces, candy and jewelry all over their body, neon colored wigs, huge 50? wide leg jeans, midriff showing crop tops, and towering platform shoes on. They choose their clothes by texture, color, and size. Some ravers even make their own clothes to their perfection (Robbs 1). Ravers will wear whatever they want, be whomever they want, and dance whichever way they want. Ravers have more of a problem standing out than fitting in when they are at raves. Ravers are all about love, dancing, and just enjoying the music (Ruiz 6). Ravers always consider every new place they go to as a possible location for a new rave. Ravers love to hug and dance everywhere. Ravers are known for dancing anywhere at anytime. Ravers are also known to be great entertainers with glowsticks (Robbs 1). At raves, skilled DJs play techno music which ravers will brake dance to. ?Techno?, ?House?, and ?Jungle? music are the types of music played at raves (Brown & Behlendorf 5).
Ravers usually don?t worry about other people judging them and ravers usually won?t judge other people. Ravers let the music ?set them free? and join them together in peace and joy (Brown & Behlendorf 7). People do not go to raves expecting to find sex partners or just to be seen there. Assume nothing about ravers except that they intend to have a great time at the rave. People who usually have a good time at their first rave will most likely continue going. Racial diversity reflects the general diversity of the population, but there are always those close-minded people who cannot except different kinds of people. Ravers attend these raves to let go of these social trappings (Brown & Behlendorf 7). Ravers are very accepting of each other. Ravers go to raves for the people, the ?vibe,? the music, and because they say a rave is a place where they feel they belong. Ravers see raves as a musical feast where they can find acceptance where everyone can be themselves (Thomas 2). Promoters of these raves are usually former ravers or ravers themselves (Brown & Behlendorf 7).
Unfortunately there is a downside to this updated harmony and peace (Laughinghouse & Owen 3). Raves are among the most peaceful, popular, music oriented gatherings worldwide in an antisocial crowd. Yet, in spite of this, police and lawmakers are tending to ?crack down on raves, ignoring their own hypocrisy as they turn blind eye to sporting events and rock concerts where violence and drunken driving occur with a far greater occurrence and severity then any techno dance party or rave? (Brown & Behlendorf 7). Ravers don?t have to worry about underage drinking, though. Alcohol is rarely served at raves (Ruiz 6). A rave is not about getting and doing drugs (Thomas 6). Drugs, especially Ecstasy, or ?E,? are closely associated with the rave culture. Many different kinds of drugs have surfaced at these raves, although they say that the majority of people attending raves aren?t into drugs (Brown & Behlendorf 7). Ravers are not inclined toward any kind of criminal mischief (Thomas 2). There is a minority of the ravers that go to these raves for the drugs, and they give the rest of the people a bad name. The drug factor has also lead to crackdowns on raves around the country. People are confused about what happens at raves. Some think the entire scene is about drugs. They never mention the music, dancing, and culture, which for most ravers that is what it?s all about (Laughinghouse & Owens 3). For the most part, all you see are a lot of happy people who are into giving hugs, sharing love, and having new experiences, which is also what raves and ravers are basically about.
The subject of drugs at raves is very controversial. Some wonder whether the public would have more easily accepted raves if the presence of drugs had not been so high (Ruiz 5). Of course, many others wonder how raves could have ever came about without them (Brown & Behlendorf 6). ?For every raver who chooses to enhance his or her experience drugs there is a raver who chooses not to? (Brown & Behlendorf 7), even though in scenes with closely knit social circles it is impossible to predict whether some, none, many, or all of the people at a rave will be under the influence of some kind of illegal drug. Ravers who have been to more than a few raves can say they have seen both extremes and everything in between.
There are preferred selections of the drugs used at raves. One of these drugs is marijuana. Cheap, plentiful, and predictable, pot is one of the safest moods altering substances available (Brown & Behlendorf 7). Ecstasy or ?E? is the most popular drug at raves because of its way of making a person want to dance when they hear the music. Then comes acid, which is also known as LSD. It is a cheap psychedelic known for distorting and intensifying sensory input. Next is KETAMINE HCI, which is commonly known as ?K? or Special K. It is an intense dissociating psychedelic, often adulterated with other drugs. Finally there is 2C-B, its effects are similar to LSD and is usually taken in with Ecstasy to enhance the effects (Brown & Behlendorf 6).
In conclusion, I feel that there is nothing wrong with raves. I have never been to a rave but I do have many friends that have gone to raves and I am planning to go to a few this summer. When I hear the word rave the first thing that comes to my mind is PLUR. Fun loving people that are enjoying themselves by dancing is what I picture when I hear about a rave. Maybe a small percentage of these people will be under the influence of drugs at raves, but almost everywhere you go there will be the use of illegal drugs or the selling of alcoholic beverages. I love to hear about raves from my friends that have gone to them, and I never hear about bad things at the raves they go to, only good. Like I said ravers are known as ?peace loving hippies of the nineties that are only looking for a good time? (Laughinghouse & Owen 2)
Brown, Mike and Brian Behlendorf. ?Techno Music and Raves FAQ. Online. 26 Apr. 1999. http://hyperreal.org/raves/altraveFAQ.html.
Laughinghouse, Amy and Frank Owen. ?Rave On!? Teen People. Apr. 1999: 75-77.
Robbs, Tom. ?How to Spot a Raver.? Online. 26 Apr. 1999. http://www.mindspring.com/~keidel/raverspot.html.
Ruiz, Alfonso. ?Ravers play Across the Bay.? Online. 2 May, 1999. http://www.hyperreal.org/raves/media/articles/dailycal.
Thomas, Alice. ?Music filled Raves become the latest Rage.? Online. 24 Apr. 1999. http://www.dispatch.com/news/newsfea2/dec97/rave1206.html.