Applied Ethnomusicology in Post-Mission Australian Aboriginal Contexts: ethical responsibility, style and aesthetics.

Swijghuisen Reigersberg, Muriel (2021). Applied Ethnomusicology in Post-Mission Australian Aboriginal Contexts: ethical responsibility, style and aesthetics. In: Myrick, Nathan and Porter, Mark eds. Ethics and Christian Musicking. Congregational Music Studies Series. Abingdon, UK: Routledge, pp. 183–201.

URL: https://www.routledge.com/Ethics-and-Christian-Mus...

Abstract

In this piece I suggest that while applied ethnomusicology generally may have been vindicated of its “manipulative” charge, applied research in Christian post-mission contexts has not. Through the lens of my own applied, collaborative research project with the Lutheran Australian Aboriginal community choir of Hopevale, Northern Queensland, between 2004 and 2005 I will show, however, that it is possible to ethically accommodate Indigenous Christian beliefs, histories and the “ethics of style” (Rommen 2007) through musical performance even when changes to musical style are introduced in Christian contexts using an applied, practice as research approach. I will illustrate how I, as an atheist, applied, participatory action researcher, approached the ethics of style and performance aesthetics in the highly politicized context of post-mission Australia when performing for Aboriginal, tourist and local, mixed audiences and how this impacted positively on community members and singers alike.

I propose that in applied post-mission, (post)-colonial Christian contexts the ethics of style married with the ethical responsibilities inherent in the facilitation of musical performance (Warren 2014) and the relationship between ethics and authenticity (Taylor 2018 [1991]) have an important role to play in how we rationalize the ethical implications of applied research in Christian contexts generally.

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About

  • Item ORO ID
  • 75110
  • Item Type
  • Book Section
  • ISBN
  • 0-367-43148-3, 978-0-367-43148-8
  • Keywords
  • aesthetics; ethnomusicology; aboriginal Australians; choral singing; musical style
  • Academic Unit or School
  • Other Departments > Research and Academic Strategy
    Other Departments
  • Copyright Holders
  • © 2021 selection and editorial matter, Nathan Myrick and Mark Porter, © individual chapters, the contributors
  • Depositing User
  • Muriel Swijghuisen Reigersberg

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