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Howard, Keith, ed. (2016) Music as Intangible Cultural Heritage: Policy, Ideology and Practice in the Preservation of East Asian Traditions. Abingdon: Routledge. (SOAS Musicology Series)

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Music as Intangible Cultural Heritage explores the longstanding and extensive efforts to preserve music in East Asia, documenting and charting parallels and differences in legislation and the operation of systems for preservation and conservation, and reflecting on the results of intervention in China, Korea, Japan and Taiwan. It brings together detailed ethnographic observations with local, national and international critiques, exploring both highly celebrated and regional or minority traditions. The music and dance to Korea’s Confucian sacrificial rituals is considered alongside the ancient Chinese guqin seven-stringed zither beloved of the literati of old and the celebrated Fukien-originating classical ensemble genre of nanguan in Taiwan. The music of China’s ethnic minorities, from Kam big song through the Nuosu-Yi mouth harp to Naxi Dongjing lay musicians and ritualists is juxtaposed with the portrayal of regional music by the Chinese media. Essays detail the highly adapted northern Korean-originating Ritual for Paebaengi and the maintenance of Okinawan regional identity through music, in which the sanshin three-stringed plucked lute plays a major role. And, the Japanese flute-and-percussion matsuri bayashi processional music of Chichibu and ningyō jōruri puppet theatres of Awaji Island and Awa are examined alongside their increasingly more familiar urban counterparts. East Asia has a long history of legislating and setting up preservation and promotion strategies to counter the feared loss of indigenous musical and other cultural forms. For this reason, it is an ideal region to study in order to assess the policies and practices that have now become common and familiar as many societies counter the perceived loss of cultural diversity caused by globalization, modernization, urbanization, and the spread of mass media. Japan passed a law instigating a programme to protect its cultural heritage in 1950; Korea followed in 1962, Taiwan in 1982, and China more recently. Preservation and conservation have in the last few decades become global issues. UNESCO has added concern for the intangible cultural heritage to its longstanding support for World Heritage Sites and endangered languages, appointing Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity in 2001, 2003 and 2005 – designations now subsumed within a Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity – and adopting the Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage in 2003. China, Japan and Korea are well represented in the Representative List, and are active in promoting the Convention. East Asian Music as Intangible Cultural Heritage is edited by Keith Howard, with essays by Helen Rees (University of California at Los Angeles), Olivia Kraef (Berlin and Beijing), Catherine Ingram (Melbourne University and IAAS, Leiden), Lauren Gorfinkel (UTS, Sydney), Roald Maliangkay (ANU, Canberra), Ying-fen Wang (Taiwan National University), Shino Arisawa (Tokyo Gakugei University), Jane Alaszewska (Bukkyō University), Matt Gillan (International Christian University, Tokyo).

Item Type: Edited Book or Journal Volume
Additional Information: Paperback edition by Routledge published in 2016 of edited book first published by Ashgate in 2012.
Keywords: Intangible Cultural Heritage, Music, Preservation, UNESCO, China, Korea, Japan, Taiwan
SOAS Departments & Centres: Legacy Departments > Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Department of Music
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GN Anthropology
G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GR Folklore
M Music and Books on Music > ML Literature of music
ISBN: 9781138245464
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 22 Oct 2016 14:26

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