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First seen in England in 1988, raves are characterized as clandestine or semi-clandestine parties organized in uncommon locations or outside the city; far from the clubs and discothŹques, ravers often came together in fields in the countryside or abandoned industrial areas to celebrate their musical rite to the sounds of a new electronic soundtrack. In the following years, the phenomenon grew exponentially: the first edition of the Berlin Loveparade in 1989 drew 150 people to the Wall; the most recent editions have seen more than a million participants. At the same time, there was a growth in popularity of this music called techno which created a vast listening public and an industry; subgroups then developed, such as hardcore, ambient, jungle, etc. The subject of our study, started in 1996 and terminated in 2001, regards the more commercial side of this phenomenon. In the course of the last few years, we have, therefore, documented the places in Europe where raves -- all thoroughly organized and no longer clandestine as they had been originally -- were attracting the highest numbers of participants (Zurich, Berlin, Paris, Ibiza, etc.), thus discovering a true “techno population” which would not remain a marginalized phenomenon, but an important aspect of modern youth society, where ideology, principles and lifestyles are let loose in the hypnotic, thumping rhythms of a music made to be danced to.

 

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