Sample Music Essays on Nationalism and Music

Sample Music Essays on Nationalism and Music

Nationalism can be defined under different phenomena. It can be defined as a political ideology whereby it represents a system of ideas with the rights of self-determination of people. Nationalism can also be defined as a kind of social identity and related sentiments whereby one thinks of themselves as part of a nation with patriotism and national pride. It can be defined as a kind of social movement with some sort of political organization and activity. There are different types of nationalism, which include the civic nationalism whereby one’s national identity is based on citizenship and is acquired. Ethnic nationalism is based on ancestry as a national identity and is not acquired. Nationalism involves three themes, namely, autonomy, unity, and identity. Autonomy and unity sets nationalism apart from ethnicity.

Music is easy and pleasant to listen to and sing along. Thus, music can be used to express national and local authenticity. In addition, music can provide an entry into the places and sentiments of ethnic belonging. In the “Digging up Data in a Nepalese field” case study, Nepalese folk music has no scores or local concerts. Nepal is a topographically diverse country with over 30 distinct ethnic groups each with its own musical traditions and having various religions with their own brands of sacred music. Nepal is thus referred to as an ethno- musicological goldmine.

Folk traditions are divided into four main groups that correspond with the physical geography of the country. Music of the Terai people’s, for instance, at the Southern border is related to North Indian folk traditions and the music of Nepali speaking Indo-Nepalese castes of the mid-hills. Another group of music is the festival music, devotional singing, and drumming traditions of the Newars of the Kathmandu valley and the music of the high altitude-dwelling peoples, which are related to musical traditions of the Tibet. In the Kathmandu valley, there is a classical music tradition related to that of the North India and a genre of modern music that blends elements of the Nepalese folk and Hindi films music to produce a type of Nepalese national light music, which are broadcast across the country by Radio Nepal. Music of the Indo-Nepalese castes of the hillside villages involves a caste-based range of musical traditions. Currently, the musical soundscape of an Indo-Nepalese village is dominated by the Hindi film recordings or Radio Nepal while traditional music is heard during festivals. Other Indo-Nepalese castes have own music for instance blacksmiths make an iron Jew’s harp upon which they play folk tunes and entertain themselves. Therefore, Nepalese music was based on the background geography and not the musicians own artistic works.

Popular Mexican musical traditions case studies worked on the Mariachi and the Jarocho music of the Mexicans. There were only two major empires that is the Aztek and Mayan, which had dominated the other Indian groups. As a result, these music case studies represented the native Indian community. Festivals of song and dance among the Aztec were organized for delight of inhabitants and more especially to honor their gods. This was maintained by singing not only traditional songs but by also composing new dances and songs.

By the beginning of the Twentieth century, many regional cultures were recognized. Music evolved to reflect new realities of regional Mexican lives. At the end of the Twentieth century, social changes swiftly eroded the bases of regionalism and a select canon of songs and dances was created. These were the Mariachi and the Jarocha music. Mariachi was a local, isolated musical tradition relatively unknown outside is home region. The song was presented as stage performer at the President residence to mark the visit of one of the American’s state personality who had made visitation. In the event, Mariachi was used as an official emblem of the west Mexican and national culture and major migration of musicians to the Mexico City would soon flow. Stars of the Mariachi music had seldom-personal connections to the grassroots culture of the West Mexico and new standards of musical instrumentation and performance style evolved as the Mariachi musicians became more professionalized.

Jarocha music on the other hand emerged from the Southern coastal plain of state of Veracruz and emerged in the colonial period. It faced forces of change that commoditized the regional traditions, sweeping urbanization and growth of the middle class thus transforming and attaining its own niche form. The musicians of the Mariachi and the Jarocha were thus linked to their traditions and at the same time, subject matter of their profession was influenced by commercial music industry with a quest for making profit.

To the Indian population, nationalism was a term to define their kind of social identity and related sentiments. They incorporated music to the national and societal affairs to identify their social structure and position. To the population, nationalism encompassed independence, unity, and identity. For instance, the Jarocha music reflected to political and the social structure of the people. Consequently, ideologies played a major role in defining music traditions. Ideologies defined the kind of music to be sung in given periods and in different places.