Musical Ethnicity: Affective, Material and Vocal Turns

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This essay reconsiders the introductory chapter to “Ethnicity, Identity and Music”
(Stokes 1994). The contributions to the volume as a whole are located in the broader ethnicity paradigms developed by Edwin Ardener (and his milieu) in Oxford in the 1980s, and the original theoretical model of the introductory chapter is clarified. Seen in the light of more recent theorisations of affect, materiality and voice, one can see not only the limitations of Ardener’s ‘ethnicity and identity’ paradigms, but also their continued theoretical salience, emphasising as they do the performativity of signs, the power relations implicit in muting, and the necessity of an integrated vision of history and ethnography. The article refers to, and discusses in passing, some ethnomusicological studies of Columbia, Italy and Turkey.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)19-34
Number of pages15
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2017


  • Ethnicity, Music, Ethnomusicology


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