← Back to All Courses

10325 : Setting Sound Standards: Music, Media, And Censorship In South Asia

Description: This course aims to introduce students to various musical and performance traditions in South Asia and their evolution within regimes of institutional, legal and media censorship. The course aims to understand how media environments and cultures of censorship are in some ways fundamental to shaping performance cultures in South Asia in the twentieth century. How do traditions of musical performance entrenched in the politics of caste, communalism, religion, sexuality and gender interact with regimes of censorship and new media? How do the latter remake and unmake said traditions? Be it the mid-century ban on film music by All India Radio to reflect the aspirations of a newly-emerging nation or the appropriation and urbanization of 'folk' musical practices within the recording studios in Nepal by upper-caste, upper-class male performers- censorship and media infrastructures have been integral to the current ontologies of diverse musical genres in South Asia. Through the analysis of a variety of primary and secondary texts on performance and musical aesthetics, media and music ethnographies, reception and production histories as well as critical listening/viewing exercises, this course seeks to complicate mainstream Euro-American narratives that tend to posit media-modernities as global and uniform. We will seek to understand how South Asian musical cultures and sound practices enter into a creative interplay with musical discourses and media-materialities emerging in the West.

Instructor(s): Ronit Ghosh

Offered: Autumn 2022

Category: Theory

Cluster(s): Electronic Music