The Political Potency of Tibetan Identity in Pop Music and Dunglen. / Morcom, Anna.

In: Himalaya, Journal of the Association for Nepal and Himalayan Studies, Vol. 38, No. 1, 16, 21.06.2018, p. 127-144.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Published

Standard

The Political Potency of Tibetan Identity in Pop Music and Dunglen. / Morcom, Anna.

In: Himalaya, Journal of the Association for Nepal and Himalayan Studies, Vol. 38, No. 1, 16, 21.06.2018, p. 127-144.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Harvard

Morcom, A 2018, 'The Political Potency of Tibetan Identity in Pop Music and Dunglen', Himalaya, Journal of the Association for Nepal and Himalayan Studies, vol. 38, no. 1, 16, pp. 127-144. <https://digitalcommons.macalester.edu/himalaya/vol38/iss1/16>

APA

Morcom, A. (2018). The Political Potency of Tibetan Identity in Pop Music and Dunglen. Himalaya, Journal of the Association for Nepal and Himalayan Studies, 38(1), 127-144. [16]. https://digitalcommons.macalester.edu/himalaya/vol38/iss1/16

Vancouver

Morcom A. The Political Potency of Tibetan Identity in Pop Music and Dunglen. Himalaya, Journal of the Association for Nepal and Himalayan Studies. 2018 Jun 21;38(1):127-144. 16.

Author

Morcom, Anna. / The Political Potency of Tibetan Identity in Pop Music and Dunglen. In: Himalaya, Journal of the Association for Nepal and Himalayan Studies. 2018 ; Vol. 38, No. 1. pp. 127-144.

BibTeX

@article{0a4a17f8452b4a6b92eb422650206aa3,
title = "The Political Potency of Tibetan Identity in Pop Music and Dunglen",
abstract = "Since their beginnings in the 1980s, Tibetan pop music and dunglen (lute songs of northeastern Tibet) have shown strong expressions of Tibetan identity. They also represent a flourishing area of Tibetan language cultural production. This is significant after the repetitive propaganda songs of the Cultural Revolution and given the pressures and restrictions in Tibet on language and religion in particular. However, in this article, I critique straightforward interpretations of the Tibetanness of Tibetan popular music as representing a zone of assertion or resistance, arguing instead that the political potency of Tibetan pop music and dunglen is far more double-edged, coopted and complex. Drawing on ethnography, I describe how state institutions and largely Tibetan cultural workers have in fact played the leading role in its genesis and production and are still a powerful force in its production and dissemination. Moreover, while it is often said that the state is against Tibetan identity and culture, in fact, the attitude is far more ambivalent and contradictory, with China a unitary multi-ethnic state where 55 minority nationalities with distinct culture and identity are recognized, including Tibetans. I argue through the analysis of song lyrics that expressions of Tibetan identity per se are not censored; rather, it is when these expressions are linked to particular political demands. As I explore, a number of reasons can be identified as to why the state does not censor Tibetan pop music and dunglen more harshly, and furthermore, there are reasons why Tibetan language assertion has had so much more success in the realm of pop music than it has had in schools.",
author = "Anna Morcom",
year = "2018",
month = jun,
day = "21",
language = "English",
volume = "38",
pages = "127--144",
journal = "Himalaya, Journal of the Association for Nepal and Himalayan Studies",
number = "1",

}

RIS

TY - JOUR

T1 - The Political Potency of Tibetan Identity in Pop Music and Dunglen

AU - Morcom, Anna

PY - 2018/6/21

Y1 - 2018/6/21

N2 - Since their beginnings in the 1980s, Tibetan pop music and dunglen (lute songs of northeastern Tibet) have shown strong expressions of Tibetan identity. They also represent a flourishing area of Tibetan language cultural production. This is significant after the repetitive propaganda songs of the Cultural Revolution and given the pressures and restrictions in Tibet on language and religion in particular. However, in this article, I critique straightforward interpretations of the Tibetanness of Tibetan popular music as representing a zone of assertion or resistance, arguing instead that the political potency of Tibetan pop music and dunglen is far more double-edged, coopted and complex. Drawing on ethnography, I describe how state institutions and largely Tibetan cultural workers have in fact played the leading role in its genesis and production and are still a powerful force in its production and dissemination. Moreover, while it is often said that the state is against Tibetan identity and culture, in fact, the attitude is far more ambivalent and contradictory, with China a unitary multi-ethnic state where 55 minority nationalities with distinct culture and identity are recognized, including Tibetans. I argue through the analysis of song lyrics that expressions of Tibetan identity per se are not censored; rather, it is when these expressions are linked to particular political demands. As I explore, a number of reasons can be identified as to why the state does not censor Tibetan pop music and dunglen more harshly, and furthermore, there are reasons why Tibetan language assertion has had so much more success in the realm of pop music than it has had in schools.

AB - Since their beginnings in the 1980s, Tibetan pop music and dunglen (lute songs of northeastern Tibet) have shown strong expressions of Tibetan identity. They also represent a flourishing area of Tibetan language cultural production. This is significant after the repetitive propaganda songs of the Cultural Revolution and given the pressures and restrictions in Tibet on language and religion in particular. However, in this article, I critique straightforward interpretations of the Tibetanness of Tibetan popular music as representing a zone of assertion or resistance, arguing instead that the political potency of Tibetan pop music and dunglen is far more double-edged, coopted and complex. Drawing on ethnography, I describe how state institutions and largely Tibetan cultural workers have in fact played the leading role in its genesis and production and are still a powerful force in its production and dissemination. Moreover, while it is often said that the state is against Tibetan identity and culture, in fact, the attitude is far more ambivalent and contradictory, with China a unitary multi-ethnic state where 55 minority nationalities with distinct culture and identity are recognized, including Tibetans. I argue through the analysis of song lyrics that expressions of Tibetan identity per se are not censored; rather, it is when these expressions are linked to particular political demands. As I explore, a number of reasons can be identified as to why the state does not censor Tibetan pop music and dunglen more harshly, and furthermore, there are reasons why Tibetan language assertion has had so much more success in the realm of pop music than it has had in schools.

UR - http://digitalcommons.macalester.edu/himalaya/

M3 - Article

VL - 38

SP - 127

EP - 144

JO - Himalaya, Journal of the Association for Nepal and Himalayan Studies

JF - Himalaya, Journal of the Association for Nepal and Himalayan Studies

IS - 1

M1 - 16

ER -