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Cultural Diversity in the Temporal Arts: Challenges and Opportunities

February 27, 12:30pm - 1:30pm
Mānoa Campus, Center for Korean Studies auditorium

The UHM Colleges of Arts & Sciences Present


A free public talk presented by Dai Ho Chun Distinguished Lecturer

Linda Barwick
University of Sydney

The temporal arts (music, dance and the verbal arts) are found in all known human societies and arise from closely intertwined human capacities. Yet they present a dazzling array of diversity worldwide, a diversity that is ever-changing and that continues to develop as new generations of composers and performers emerge and come into contact with each other and with each other’s languages, ideas and modes of social organization. The temporal arts are especially prized by speakers of small and endangered languages, who often stress the importance of documenting and revitalizing their traditions of music, dance and poetry.

This presentation will look at some genres of song that have emerged in Australia and elsewhere in the last century, with particular attention to the multilayered and often oblique language used in songs. What challenges do songs present for musicologists, linguists and other researchers working with communities of speakers of small and endangered languages who wish to document and maintain their temporal arts? What can we learn about cultural diversity from such phenomena? Can we apply these lessons to our efforts to document and maintain cultural diversity in ways that make sense to the holders and inheritors of these traditions?

Linda Barwick is Associate Professor in the School of Letters, Art and Media at the University of Sydney, and Director of the Pacific and Regional Archive for Digital Sources in Endangered Cultures (PARADISEC). She has undertaken ethnomusicological fieldwork in Italy, Australia and the Philippines, and has published widely on Australian Indigenous Music, Italian traditional music, and ethnographic e-humanities. She has a particular interest in working with communities to provide local access to research, and in collaboration with linguist colleagues and song composers has produced richly documented multimedia publications and archival deposits of various Indigenous song traditions. Recent publications include a monograph co-authored with Allan Marett and Lysbeth Ford, For the Sake of a Song: Wangga Songmen and Their Repertories (Sydney: Sydney University Press, in press 2012), and the co-edited volume Italy in Australia's Musical Landscape, eds Linda Barwick & Marcello Sorce Keller (Melbourne: Lyrebird Press, 2012).

This event is made possible by the late Dr. Dai Ho Chun through his estate gift, which established the Dai Ho Chun Endowment for Distinguished Lecturers at the UH Mānoa Colleges of Arts and Sciences. Dr. Chun was a distinguished and visionary educator. This lecture is also sponsored by the 3rd International Conference on Language Documentation & Conservation (ICLDC), where Dr. Barwick will be a featured Master Class presenter on ethnomusicology.

Event Sponsor
Dai Ho Chun Distinguished Lecturer Series, Mānoa Campus

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