The Institute for Japanese Studies presents:
"Hired to be Overheard: Resonances of Chindon-ya on the Streets of Osaka'"
Flyer: Abe Flyer [PDF]
Abstract: Chindon-ya, dating back to the 1840s, are ostentatiously costumed street musicians who publicize a business by parading through neighborhood streets in Japan. Against the background of long-term economic downturn, growing social precarity, and nuclear anxiety, Abe’s recently published book investigates how this seemingly outdated means of advertisement has recently gained traction as an aesthetic, economic, and political practice after decades of inactivity. Drawing on the book, this presentation will address the central analytic hibiki (resonance), which highlights the processes in which chindon-ya’s sound is designed to elicit an affective response from a listener who simply “overhears” chindon-ya in public spaces. By examining the distinct mode of listening and sounding cultivated by chindon-ya, Abe will explore how ethnographic attention to the locally grounded form of audition reveals the limits of Western conceptions of listening that have normalized the way we think about the relationship between sound, space, history, and listening subjects.
Marié Abe is Associate Professor of Music in the Department of Musicology and Ethnomusicology at Boston University. Broadly speaking, her scholarship explores the intersection of sound, space, and sociality, bridging sound studies and cultural human geography. She is particularly invested in the politics of sound in social movements. On the side, Marié enjoys playing the accordion, and performs internationally with Debo Band, the Boston-based Ethiopian groove collective. She is also a co-producer of the NPR radio documentary “Squeezebox Stories”, which tells stories of Californian immigration history using the accordion as a common trope.
Free and Open to the Public
If you require an accommodation, such as live captioning, to participate in this event, please contact Stephanie Metzger at firstname.lastname@example.org or 614-247-4725. Requests made at least two weeks in advance of the event will generally allow us to provide seamless access, but the university will make every effort to meet requests made after this date.
This event is co-sponsored by the Musicology program at OSU's School of Music with support from EMIC: Graduate Student Interest Group for Expressive Culture & the Japan Graduate Studies Organization. The Institute for Japanese Studies Lecture Series is supported by a U.S. Department of Education Title VI grant to The Ohio State University East Asian Studies Center.