last day of class in Music in Asian America

I've been teaching an undergrad summer course Music in Asian America. Today was our last day of class. The students presented their analysis of songs by Asian Dub Foundation ("Debris" and "Change") and M.I.A. ("Pull up the People"). It's fascinating how well students respond to Internet media and pop culture. They interpreted the songs with great details and related the content of the songs to artist's biography. Most of all, I'm happy to introduce them to globally oriented progressive sounds.

My friend I-Jen Fang, who is on the performance faculty here at UVa, came in and gave an informative multimedia presentation of her career. Foregrounding her Asian affiliations, I-Jen narrated moments in her performance career where her ethnicity has been highlighted. We found that that I-Jen was chosen to be (as a token of internationalism) on Mr. Rogers when she was in college! Also she discussed the glass ceiling effect experienced by performers of Asian ethnicity in the US.

It's crucial to consider the practitioners' perspective when commenting cultural production. Thanks for coming to our class, I-Jen!

1 comment:

Kevin said...

Asian America is certainly a terminology that I don't hear or see very often. However, growing up as a Taiwanese-born American, I believe that there isn't a more appropriate term that reflects the 'world' I live in and thrive to understand!

Write more!