As the majority of our Cafe Discussion Group are seniors, we decided to do a analysis of a cultural practice specific to senior year at St. Lawrence; Senior Blues.

Last night was Tuesday Blues and all of us were in attendance, with the exception of the one 20 year old, Beau.

Our Gramscian analysis of Senior Blues explains how our senior class is the dominant hegemonic bloc within the St. Lawrence community. The union of social forces has created this tradition of going to the bar for $1.25 beers. This forms a type of “historic bloc” that produces and reproduces the hegemonic culture of Senior year. The tradition of going to Blues is a coveted privilege for all underclassmen under 21 years old.

Althusser would view the culture of Senior Blues in terms of ISA and RSA. The ISA is the social pressure felt by all seniors to attend this night at the bar. The influence of the dominant idea of senior year Tuesday nights at the bar is reinforced through peer pressure for all to attend in order to have the most fun together during senior year. This is reproduced as the attendance to senior blues is high each and every week. The RSA is the United States law permitting only 21 year olds and over to be able to consume alcohol. Corey, the bouncer, can be seen as a RSA because he strictly reinforcesĀ  the law.

Benjamin would say that the “aura” of Blues is represented through incentivzed dollar beers and free t-shirts to promote the cultural practice to continue.

The privilege to go to Blues creates a class divide between those old enough to attend Blues and those who must wait till they turn of age.

The bar scene can also be seen as a microcosm for all of the different social groups on campus. Almost all social circles are represented at the bar at Blues. Although groups of friends tend to stick together, the general “senior bond” and culture of senior year brings everyone together in the same space. The culture of being a senior blends the lines for social hierarchy and allows everyone to feel included.

The atmosphere of the bar is different than other weekend nights. It is more of a hangout place for students to de-stress and catch-up than it is a night to go out and get drunk.


Natalie Anna Grace Andrew Beau

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