“Back to the Island”

Timothy Rommen

in Funky Nassau

Published by University of California Press

Published in print May 2011 | ISBN: 9780520265684
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520948754 | DOI:
“Back to the Island”

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This chapter explores the degree to which heritage becomes a space and provides a set of itineraries that can in turn be mobilized in order to envision possible futures. The current lack of an active live music scene in Nassau effectively precludes practice-based futures, and this has been the case since at least the 1980s. The chapter illustrates that a vision of the future built on successful mobilization of nostalgia has become a dominant means of attempting to reinvigorate the present. The mobilization of nostalgia during the 1990s and the first decade of the twenty-first century was clearly driven by a need to (re)connect to an elusive core of Bahamian identity. Nostalgia thus became useful in direct proportion to the extent that cosmopolitanism eclipsed the back-to-the-bush projects of the 1970s and early 1980s.

Keywords: heritage; itineraries; music scene; Nassau; mobilization; nostalgia; Bahamian; identity; cosmopolitanism; back-to-the-bush

Chapter.  17156 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Ethnomusicology

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