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Songs from the Edge of Japan


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Table of Contents

Chapter 1 Island Treasures (Sïma nu Takara); Chapter 2 Islands of Song and Dance: Yaeyama and its Music; Chapter 3 The Southern Islands '“ Yaeyama and Okinawa in the Japanese Cultural Imagination; Chapter 4 Music for Gods, Ancestors and People '“ Yaeyaman Music in a Ritual Context; Chapter 5 Nama ni nukushōri '“ Lineages and Preservation Groups; Chapter 6 Izu su du nusï '“ The Singer is Master: Regional versus Individual Styles in the Performance of Tubarāma; Chapter 7 The Okinawa 'Boom' '“ Local Music on the National Stage; Chapter 8 Afterword;

About the Author

Dr Matthew Gillan, Department of Art and Music, International Christian University, Tokyo, Japan


'... this is an important publication and is still very relevant in a field where book-length studies in English on Okinawan music are rare indeed.' Asian Ethnology 'Gillan does a fine job of conveying the overall vitality of Yaeyaman musical life, but also voicing the various sides of localised disputes... [a] timely and valuable work.' Social Science Japan Journal 'Songs from the Edge of Japan [...] makes important contributions to Asian studies and ethnomusicology, especially in the areas of identity, island studies, music and ritual, and musical transmission. Because of the book's engaging style, Songs from the Edge of Japan would be useful as an undergraduate or graduate text for a class on Okinawan or Japanese culture or music.' Notes 'Songs from the Edge of Japan is a welcome addition to ethnomusicological scholarship on Japanese music. The author has undertaken extensive field research on the music of the islands, as well as music of Okinawa Prefecture more broadly, and has assembled a book with much historical and ethnographic information that offers insight into island cultures, southwest Japan, and the local/regional/national nexus. The book extends current knowledge on the scope of Japanese music and contributes to a growing number of studies of Japan's peripheral, regional, minority; and hybrid forms. It is very well researched and written, and contributes valuable new knowledge on traditional music practices in everyday, ritual, and popular music settings, each of which has significance within and beyond the Yaeyaman and Okinawan cultural settings.' Journal of Japanese Studies

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