Ethno-National pop-rock music: Aesthetic cosmopolitanism made from within

Motti Regev

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Pop-rock music is portrayed as a major embodiment of the transformation of national cultural uniqueness from purist essentialism into aesthetic cosmopolitanism. Examining the local production of ethno-national pop-rock, and its public reception and legitimation through half a century, the article demonstrates how forces within the national context greatly contribute to cultural globalization. The article looks at three aspects of the rise of ethno-national pop-rock music to national legitimacy: the agency of musicians, analyzed as structurally stemming from the intersection of the field of pop-rock and the field of national culture; a four-phase, half-century long process, called here the 'historical musical event' of pop-rock; and the consequence of pop-rock legitimacy for performance of national uniqueness. The general arguments and theoretical points are illustrated by detailed reference to the cases of pop-rock music in Argentina and Israel.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)317-341
Number of pages25
JournalCultural Sociology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Nov 2007


  • Aesthetic cosmopolitanism
  • Argentina
  • Israel
  • National culture
  • Pop-rock music
  • Popular music
  • Sociology of music


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