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Lecture Series: 'Identity', Peace and Learning through Rural Music Festivals in Northern Colombia

Event Type
Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies (CLACS)
101 International Studies Building, 910 S. Fifth Street, Champaign
Sep 5, 2013   12:00 pm  
Ian Midleton, Music, Graduate Student
Angelina Cotler
Originating Calendar
Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies (CLACS)

In this paper I present the rural music practice of tambora from Northern Colombia as central to practitioners' identification as non-violent. I show some of the ways in which it has become entwined with the formalization of music and dance education, and the public projection of peace, or the absence of violence, through music festivals in the region. I first consider how the group of people involved in tambora has expanded through the establishment of educational clubs where young people learn from older musicians. I also discuss a shift in repertoire which has accompanied this change, as children's music games have been adopted, or maintained, by adults. Second, I go on to consider the arguments of locals who claim that tambora festivals help minimise violence in the region by strengthening community identification, preventing the desertion of young people to armed groups, and allowing towns to present an image of non-violence. I end by showing three central ways in which, for people of the region, tambora bears significant associations with peace.

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