Authenticity and Non‐Western Music

Stephen Davies

in Musical Works and Performances

Published in print June 2001 | ISBN: 9780199241583
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191597329 | DOI:
Authenticity and Non‐Western Music

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Performances of non‐Western music can be assessed for their authenticity as an expression of the society's historically important musical traditions, repertoires, and practices. Doing so does not presuppose that musical traditions must be old, static, and free of foreign influences. Judgements of authenticity must be carefully indexed to the times and contexts that are being compared and should come from within the culture or be informed by its views. We could not expect to understand their views, though, unless we learn the conventions of their musical repertoires, styles, and genres, the characteristics of the instruments they employ, the technical and other demands imposed on the performer, and the functions that music fills in their lives. As a case study, musicians from Bali were interviewed about whether playing for tourists degrades their music.

Keywords: authenticity; Bali; convention; non‐Western; practice; tourist; tradition

Chapter.  19886 words. 

Subjects: Aesthetics and Philosophy of Art

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