It was Never Just about the Music: How Artistic Communication Genres Could Liberate Ethnomusicology
In this rhetorical short essay, I argue for the benefits and possibility of grounding ethnomusicological research in enactments of artistic communication genres. I describe the conceptual imprecision and incomplete analyses that often result from our fieldwork being guided by abstract categories like music and dance. I go on to outline the kinds of research needed to better understand any and all artistic acts formally and socially, and point to the promise of richer, more coherent, more productive, more multi-disciplinary output, with more relevance to the world.
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