Joseph S.C. Lam

in Music

ISBN: 9780199757824
Published online June 2011 | | DOI:

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  • Music
  • Applied Music
  • Ethnomusicology
  • Music Theory and Analysis
  • Musicology and Music History
  • Music Education and Pedagogy


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Chinese music constitutes a tremendously complex and expansive phenomenon; like the renowned Yellow River of China, it flows through diverse communities, places, and times in a massive land that Chinese have called home since antiquity. And like the river approaching its estuaries, this musical tradition was particularly turbulent in the past two centuries or so, when China experienced drastic cultural, political, and social transformations brought forth by its encounters with the West. As such, Chinese music resists simple characterization and demands analyses with different perspectives and contrasting methodologies. Responding to this reality of Chinese music, Chinese and non-Chinese scholars have creatively and diligently examined the phenomenon with a multitude of methods and perspectives, many of which have combined traditional Chinese scholarship with Western or westernized approaches. The result produced is a wealth of writings on Chinese musicians, histories, theories, practices, repertories, structural-stylistic features, and aesthetic-cultural-social meanings and connections. To introduce this vast scholarship to general readers, this short bibliography will present a short, selective list of contemporary publications that register current and representative interpretations by native and non-native scholars, revealing their similar and different approaches and interests. The list cites current and standard works written in English, which are more accessible to international readers, as well as a relatively limited number of seminal monographs and articles written in Chinese by native scholars whose creativity and productivity have been particularly vigorous and fruitful since the mid-1990s. Readers are encouraged to compare and coordinate the annotations in different sections because many cited works would fit in two or more bibliographic categories. Readers are also encouraged to consult the specialized bibliographies attached to many of the publications cited here.

Article.  18046 words. 

Subjects: Music ; Applied Music ; Ethnomusicology ; Music Theory and Analysis ; Musicology and Music History ; Music Education and Pedagogy

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