From the Tanjore Court to the Madras Music Academy: A social History of Music in South India

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Item Code: IDH547
Publisher: Oxford University Press, New Delhi
Author: Lakshmi Subramanian
Edition: 2011
ISBN: 0195678354
Pages: 196
Cover: Paperback
Other Details 8.8" X 5.7"
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Book Description
From the Jacket

In moving from the quiet courtyards of Tanjore to the concert halls of Madras, the social context of music and performance underwent a striking transformation. Traditional music was also used in the freedom movement as an emblem of India's uniqueness and independent identity. Departing from conventional scholarship on the subject, Lakshmi Subramanian presents a distinctive account of the making of a modern classical tradition.

Subramanian traces the changes in traditional music in South India as it adapted to the necessities of colonial and postcolonial social realities. Her engaging narrative of the production of knowledge about music and the related institution building proves raises larger questions of identity and imagination. She also discusses the influence of nationalism in the creation of an auditory habit.

The author shows how performance and patronage influenced the self-development of the consuming elite. Anticipating the dilemmas of the emerging modern Indian middle class, she also explores the ambivalence and ambiguities that informed musical practices in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

The book will be important for students and scholars of history, music, sociology, ethnomusicology, cultural studies, and South India. It will also interest tourists and informed general readers.

About the Author

Lakshmi Subramanian is Senior Fellow in History, Centre for studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta.

Preface and Acknowledgements vii
List of illustrations x
Introduction 1
1 Music Comes to the City 23
2 Defining the Classical: the Nationalist Imperative 55
3 Consolidating the Classical: the Madras Music Academy and the Politics of Custodianship 84
4 On the Margins of the Classical: Law, Social Reform, and the Devadasis in the Madras Presidency 115
5 Contesting the Classical: the Tamil Isai Iyakkam and the contest for Custodianship 142
Epilogue 172
Bibliography 180
Index 192
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