Music and the Poetics of Production in the Bolivian Andes is a musical ethnography of a Quechua-speaking community of northern PotosA-, in the Bolivian Andes. Based on extensive fieldwork, it explores how music permeates the lives of this group of herders and agriculturalists, and how it is deeply interwoven with agricultural and social (re)production. In this harsh highland environment, persuading the earth to bear fruit is a perpetual challenge, and music emerges as an especially critical and dynamic medium; one that provides rich insights into broader social processes and values. Music and dance orchestrate the seasonal transformation of the landscape, coordinate processes of life and death, and articulate relations with outside social groups and the spirit realm. Through rich and evocative ethnography, the book delves into the powerful meanings ascribed to sound; charts unfamiliar aesthetic territories; suggests how modernity can contribute to indigeneity; and reveals remarkable musical perspectives on llama husbandry and potato cultivation. As we follow the lives, shifting fortunes and musical year of this, in many ways, fragile community, a seasonally shifting array of musical instruments, genres, dances and tunings is introduced. The book is accompanied by an audio CD, photographs, musical transcriptions and explanatory diagrams.
Henry Stobart is Senior Lecturer in Ethnomusicology at Royal Holloway, University of London, UK.
Contents: Part I Creating Context; Introduction: the poetics of production: Worlds of sound: energy, weeping and feeding: the background to music; Orchestrating the year: seasonal alternation, calendars,and power. Part II Guitars and Song: Fabricating tradition and the Macha groove: guitars, artisans, seasonality and performance; Marrying the mountain and the production of people: songs of courtship and marriage. Part III The Music of a Year; May - June Violent harmony and the making of men: julajula panpipes and harvest time; June - October Cacophony, community and the water war: saints, siku panpipes, and miraculous 'renewal'; November - January Invoking the dead and crying for rain:souls, flutes, llamas and compassion; January - February/March Disembodied voices and dancing potatoes: carnival, devils, sirens, musical creation and new potatoes. Part IV Kacharpaya - 'despatch': The fragile community: epilogue; Appendices; Character glossary; Glossary; Bibliography; Index.