Modernity’s Ear: Listening to Race and Gender in World Music (Postmillennial Pop)

Modernity's Ear: Listening to Race and Gender in World Music (Postmillennial Pop) Author Roshanak Kheshti
ISBN-10 1479817864
ISBN-13 9781479817863
Year 2015-10-23
Pages 208
Language English
Publisher NYU Press
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Inside the global music industry and the racialized and gendered assumptions we make about what we hearFearing the rapid disappearance of indigenous cultures twentieth century American ethnographers turned to the phonograph to salvage native languages and musical practices Prominent among these early songcatchers were white women of comfortable class standing similar to the female consumers targeted by the music industry as the gramophone became increasingly present in bourgeois homes Through these simultaneous movements listening became constructed as a feminized practice one that craved exotic sounds and mythologized the other that made them In Modernitys Ear Roshanak Kheshti examines the ways in which racialized and gendered sounds became fetishized and in turn capitalized on by an emergent American world music industry through the promotion of an economy of desire Taking a mixed methods approach that draws on anthropology and sound studies Kheshti locates sound as both representative and constitutive of culture and power Through analyses of film photography recordings and radio as well as ethnographic fieldwork at a San Francisco based world music company Kheshti politicizes the feminine in the contemporary world music industry Deploying critical theory to read the fantasy of the feminized listener and feminized organ of the ear Modernitys Ear ultimately explores the importance of pleasure in constituting the listening self

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