Front cover image for The musical making of race and place in Colombia's black Pacific

The musical making of race and place in Colombia's black Pacific

This dissertation is about musical meaning, specifically referring to the musical practices of black people in Colombia's southern Pacific coast which are imbricated within a number of different systems of meaning. It begins by examining the ritual, social, and spatial uses of music in the Pacific, before pulling apart this cluster of practices to reveal a web of rival forms of sociality and overlapping belief systems from which modern Pacific music originated. The third chapter examines the role of music in the spatial and racial projects of elites in attributing various kinds of inferiority to the black southern Pacific, and the ways in which the black inhabitants of the Pacific themselves engaged with these hierarchies. Chapter 4 addresses the legitimization of black Pacific music by mid-twentieth-century Colombian folklorists and how local musical practitioners simultaneously embraced the hegemonic terms of folklore and stretched them to encompass their desired self-representations. The argument moves to the role of the music for present-day musicians and their participation in a particular festival, describing the contestations resulting from black Pacific music being taken up to mobilize emergent forms of public identity and private subjectivity. The final chapter shows what is at stake in these contestations by examining the use of black Pacific music in state cultural peace initiatives and the paradoxical ways in which it both promotes peace and masks pervasive violence
Thesis, Dissertation, English, 2009
New York University
Dissertation Abstracts International
Academic theses
1 online resource (526 pages)
9781109257946, 1109257945