Pogoing: Playful or violent? Punk, pogo, and mock combat

By Luc Robène, Manuel Roux, Solveig Serre


A frenzied dance form associated with the emergence of punk, the pogo expresses a new relationship to music, musical emotions, and the body. Because of its high emotional charge and its display of violence, the pogo has often been described by both enthusiasts and critics as the manifestation of an emotional disorder, associated with the moral panic surrounding punk’s “No Future” nihilism. This paper seeks to describe and historicize the emergence and evolution of the pogo, and to discuss its importance for the social actors who have adopted it.


  • Pogo
  • Punk
  • Music
  • Dance
  • Violence
  • Emotions
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