Research Into Subcultures Mods

Mod is a subculture that began in the United Kingdom in the 1960s and spread, to other countries and continues today on a  much smaller scale. It’s mainly focused on music and fashion. The subculture (mods) originated from a small group of London-based stylish young men in the late 1950s who were called ‘modernists’ because they listened to modern jazz music ,although the subculture expanded when it began include women as well.

Important elements of the mod subculture included fashion ( which were often tailor-made suits); music such as soul, ska, R&B and Motown; and motor scooters, which usually Lambretta or Vespas. The mods had so many mirrors on their scooter  for the simple reason to be different. It’s undeniable; Mods are sometimes contradictory in their way of thinking. We want to be noticed but still want to be an underground subculture. We want to stand out but we can’t stand being mainstream. We are all about the “Modern World” yet this generation of Mods exclusively rides vintage Vespas and Lambrettas.

True Mods listened to Ska, Bluebeat and Motown, as well as American R&B, but British R&B-based ‘beat’ bands quickly became a key part of Mod culture: the Small Faces, KinksZombiesAnimalsSpencer Davis GroupYardbirdsCreation and, of course, the most famous of the lot, The Who.

Modern mod music includes The Jam and Oasis, also known as ‘Brit-pop’.

The original mod scene was associated with “amphetamine-fuelled all-night dancing at clubs” (drugs).


The mods had a rival gang/ subculture, the rockers. These two subcultures were conflicting British youths of the early to mid-1960s and 1970s. Media coverage of the mods and rockers fighting in 1964 created a moral panic about British youths, and both groups became labelled as ‘folk devils’.

In the United Kingdom, rockers got involved  in fights with mods. BBC News stories from May 1964 stated that mods and rockers were jailed after riots in seaside towns in south-east of England, such as Margate, Brighton, Bournemouth and Clacton. Every year  on the August bank Holiday people meet up In Brighton and ride along the sea front as the mods and rockers did in the 1960’s and to  revive the spirit of the film – Quadrophenia.


Mods Fashion: 

( – reference from this website 

“Male mods adopted a smooth, sophisticated look that included tailor-made suits with narrow lapels (sometimes made of mohair), thin ties, button-down collar shirts, wool or cashmere jumpers (crewneck or V-neck), Chelsea or Beatle boots, loafers, Clarks desert boots, bowling shoes, and hairstyles that imitated the look of French Nouvelle Vague film actors. A few male mods went against gender norms by using eye shadow, eye-pencil or even lipstick. Mods chose scooters over motorbikes partly because they were a symbol of Italian style and because their body panels concealed moving parts and made them less likely to stain clothes with oil or road dust and also because they were a lot cheeper than motorbikes.However if a mod was able to afford a bigger bike and buy leather jackets then they would move subculture and become a rocker. Many mods wore military parkas while driving scooters in order to keep their clothes clean.

Many female mods dressed androgynously, with short haircuts, men’s trousers or shirts, flat shoes, and little makeup — often just pale foundation, brown eye shadow, white or pale lipstick and false eyelashes.Miniskirts became progressively shorter between the early and mid-1960s. As female mod fashion became more mainstream, slender models like Jean Shrimpton and Twiggy began to exemplify the mod look. Maverick fashion designers emerged, such as Mary Quant, who was known for her miniskirt designs, and John Stephen, who sold a line named “His Clothes” and whose clients included bands such as Small Faces.The television programme Ready Steady Go! helped spread awareness of mod fashions to a larger audience.”




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