How class divisions shape the definition of Ecuador's national music and identity
Whose National Music?
Identity, Mestizaje, and Migration in Ecuador
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A title in the Ethnomusicology Multimedia.
Latin American Studies Association Ecuadorian Studies Section Book Prize for the most outstanding work published in the field of Ecuadorian studies, 2012
Musical genres, musical instruments, and even songs can often capture the essence of a country's national character. In Whose National Music?, the first book-length study of Ecuadorian popular music, Ketty Wong explores Ecuadorians' views of their national identity in the twentieth and early twenty-first centuries through an examination of the music labels they use. Wong deftly addresses the notion of música nacional, an umbrella term for Ecuadorian popular songs often defined by the socio-economic, ethnic, racial, and generational background of people discussing the music.
Wong shows how the inclusion or exclusion of elite and working-class musics within the scope of música nacional articulate different social, ethnic, and racial configurations of the nation for white, mestizo, indigenous, and Afro-Ecuadorian populations.
Presenting a macropicture of what música nacional is—or should be—Whose National Music? provides a lively historical trajectory of a country's diverse musical scene.
"Whose National Music? introduces an analysis rich in historical depth and socio-musical complexity of the idiosyncratic, changing, and inevitably contested use of the term música nacional in Ecuador. Ketty Wong provides a fascinating discourse analysis, one that focuses on the power of language to claim and label music as a participatory act in imagining the nation."
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Ketty Wong is an Assistant Professor of Ethnomusicology at the University of Kansas. In 2010, she received the prestigious Casa de las Américas Musicology Prize for La música nacional: Identidad, mestizaje y migración en el Ecuador, the Spanish language version of this book.
In the series
Studies in Latin American and Caribbean Music, edited by Peter Manuel.
Studies in Latin American and Caribbean Music, edited by Peter Manuel, aims to present interdisciplinary studies in the traditional and contemporary musics of Latin America and the Caribbean.