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Antropology of Music


Music is a form of humanly organized sound. We shall study how various groups organize their music and performances. How do they cope with the many different – often contradictory – voices and expectations that emerge from different groups in society, each with their own norms and values? Change will be studied by looking at the relations between performers, patrons, and audiences, the structure of the music, and the performance setting. Music often plays an important role in rituals, and is used to express the ‘ineffable’. On the other hand, governments may use the performing arts to attract tourists. Popular music is often mediated by video-CDs, DVDs, the Internet, radio, television, cassette tapes, and CDs, and used to negotiate identity for particular communities and regions, sometimes playing a vital role in a dialogue of power among the local, the national, and the global.
The classes will include presentations of audio-visual material. If enough students are interested there will be the possibility to learn Tembang Sunda Cianjuran music (singing, bamboo flute and zithers) in a workshop after each lecture from 17.15-19.00 hours, also starting on 20 September 2005.


Lectures in English; presentations by students; literature.


Books Rouget 1985, Waterman 1990 and Seeger 2004 are available in the shops (also via internet); book van Zanten 1989 is sold out, but may be photocopied (in folder with articles; see below). Books are also available in many university libraries in the Netherlands; in Leiden: Fac. of Social Sciences library, the African Studies library. You may also try the CHIME Foundation for Chinese music (Gerecht 1, Leiden).
Articles, and the book van Zanten 1989, are collected in a folder, which may be copied at the Department of Cultural and Social Studies, room 4B41-43, Faculty of Social Sciences, Wassenaarseweg 52, Leiden. The CDs (copy of original cassette tape) with the book van Zanten 1989 may also be copied, in consultation with the course tutor. – Barendregt, Bart and Wim van Zanten (2002), “Popular music in Indonesia since 1998, in particular fusion, Indie and Islamic music on video compact discs and the internet”, Yearbook for Traditional Music 34:67-113. [47 p.]

  • Hanna, Judith Lynne (1988), ‘Sex, learning, and dance images’, chapter 1 (p.3-23) of her book Dance , sex and gender; Signs of identity, dominance, defiance, and desire. Chicago/ London: University of Chicago Press. [21 p.] – Nieuwkerk, Karin van (1998), “’An hour for God and an hour for the heart’: Islam, gender and female entertainment in Egypt”, Music and Anthropology 3, [ca. 10 p.] – Nyssen, Liesbet (2005), “Traditional and modern Khakas conceptions of sound and music”, Oideion; Performing arts online 4, [ca. 35 p.] – Reck, David B. (1996), “India/South India” in Titon, Jeff Todd (ed.), Worlds of music; An introduction to the music of the world’s people, pp. 252-315. New York: Schirmer Books. [64 p.] – Rouget, Gilbert (1985), Music and trance; A theory of the relations between music and possession. Chicago/London: University of Chicago Press. [395 p.] – Seeger, Anthony (2004), Why Suyá sing; A musical anthropology of an Amazonian people. [new paperback edition with CD.] Urbana and Chicago: University of Illinois Press. [first edition 1987.] [180 p.]
    • Waterman, Christopher Alan (1990), Jùjú; A social history and ethnography of an African popular music. [with cassette tape.] Chicago/London: The University of Chicago Press. [277 p.] – Zanten, Wim van (1989), Sundanese music in the Cianjuran style; Anthropological and musicological aspects of tembang Sunda. Dordrecht-Holland/ Providence-USA: Foris. [KITLV Verhandelingen 140; book with cassette tape 90 min.] [246 p.]
      (2002a), “Between musicology and anthropology: Methodological issues in twentieth-century ethnomusicology in the Netherlands”, in Vermeulen, Han and Jean Kommers (eds) Tales from Academia; History of anthropology in the Netherlands, Part 2:937-962. Saarbrücken: Verl. für Entwicklungspolitik. [Nijmegen studies in development and culturaI change, Vol. 40] [26 pp.] [on Blackboard]
      (2002b), “Musical theatre”. Original published in Italian (2002): ‘Il teatro musicale’, in Magrini, Tullia Universi sonori: Introduzione all\‘etnomusicologia, pp. 316-333. Torino: Einaudi. [on Blackboard, 13 pp.]
      (2004), “Temptations for ascetics: Intangible cultural heritage of the Baduy in southern Banten, Indonesia”. Original in French ‘Les tentations des ascètes;…’, in Duvignaud, Jean et Chérif Khaznadar (eds), Le patrimoine culturel immatériel: Les enjeux, les problématiques et les pratiques’, pp.124-150. Paris: Babel/ Maison des cultures du monde. [on Blackboard; 15 pp.]


Oral exam December 2005 covering the readings, including the video films, audio materials and discussions, or attending the weekly workshop Tembang Sunda Cianjuran and taking an oral exam covering the discussions and the Cianjuran book + practical notes and materials. Students will have to make an appointment for an exam. If there are many students, there will be a written examination around 15th December 2005.

Hence the examination (5 ECTS = 5 × 28 = 140 hours work) covers one of the following 3 possibilities:
(1) book Rouget 1985 [395 p.] + 231 pp. articles: Barendregt and van Zanten, Hanna, van Nieuwkerk, Nyssen, Reck, van Zanten (2002a), van Zanten (2002b), van Zanten (2004).
(2) book Waterman 1990 [277 p] + book Seeger [180 p.] + articles above, except Reck’s chapter [ =167 p.]
(3) Practical classes Tembang Sunda Cianjuran, rehearsing at home + notes practical classes, + entire book van Zanten 1989 [246 pp.] + articles under (1), except Reck’s chapter [=167p.]
Only in very special cases there is the possibility to write an essay, after consultation with the course tutor. Extension to 8 or more credit points can be discussed with the course tutor. For more ECTS (8-10) the examination covers a combination of the above in consultation with the course tutor (1 ECTS extra means reading about 28 × 6 pages = 168 pages extra).


Lectures on Tuesdays, 15-17 PM. Workshop Cianjuran music, 5.15-7 PM, after lectures.
Wassenaarseweg 52, Leiden.
Lectures in chalet 01 (near main building; workshop in 4 B50 (near secretariat Anthropology, main building).

  • 20 Sept. General introduction; Definitions of the discipline (comparative musicology, ethnomusicology, world music); What is music? Ideas about music. literature: van Zanten 2002a. – 27 Sept. Tembang Sunda Cianjuran music of West Java literature: van Zanten 1989 – 4 Oct. Music and Trance; (Part of) films: ‘Yenendi; Les hommes qui fond la pluie’, Jean Rouch (Paris 1950); Margaret Mead: ‘Trance in Bali’; Bandung (WvZ): trance in procession. Trance in Malawi (Dagmar van Tol). literature: Rouget 1985 – 11 Oct. Pop music: Jùjú (Waterman) and pop music in China, Indonesia. literature: Waterman 1990, Barendregt and van Zanten 2002. – 18 Oct. Minorities and cultural policies. Suyá in Brazil and Baduy music of West Java in Indonesian context. literature: Seeger 2004, van Zanten 2004 – 25 Oct. Musical instruments and vocal techniques; bi-phonic singing, pitch and timbre. Film Hugo Zemp ‘Song of harmonics’; video fragments Dave Dargie (South Africa) – 1 Nov. Musical principles: melody, harmony, timing; variation literature: Reck 1998 – 8 Nov. Guest lecture Arno Willekes: Jembe in Senegal. [?] – 15 Nov. Guest lecture Liesbet Nyssen: Making Khakas music after the Soviet era. literature: Nyssen 2005. – 22 Nov. Dance and gender. literature: Hanna 1988. – 29 Nov. Theatre, poetry and music in Sumatra. Parts of film ‘Told in heaven to become stories on earth’ (Randai theatre) by Wim van Zanten and Bart Barendregt (Leiden, 2000) and film ‘Play the saluang flute, use your fifth finger’ (Wim van Zanten, Leiden 2002). literature: van Zanten 2002b. – 6 Dec. Music and Islam. literature: van Nieuwkerk 1998.




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