Introduction

Authors

  • Fiona Magowan Queen's University Belfast
  • Hastings Donnan Queen's University Belfast

Abstract

The analysis of resistance and resilience in the articles in this special volume of Music and Arts in Action illustrates the complexity of the terms, their definitional ambiguities and situated tensions when they are used in conflict contexts. Rigorous debates have underlined the contested nature of the terms resistance and resilience, whereby resistance is considered a means of destabilising interpersonal and state hegemony and resilience is variously seen as an individual strategy for survival and wellbeing or an intervention impacting upon socio-economic structures. Theoretical discord further highlights the need for careful and detailed ethnographic investigation. Thus, while it might be tempting to avoid the terms altogether as some critics argue, close, critical ethnographic reading of the particularities of sonic atmospheres, as well as their corresponding musical and performative dynamics can render productive the relationship between resistance and resilience as contributors to this volume show. Thus, rather than jettison these terms we encouraged our contributors, (the majority of whose research is based in protracted conflict contexts), to take up the challenge of examining their application through vernacular understandings in order to demonstrate how individuals embody, mobilise and strategise their effects in the sounds and performances of everyday life.

Author Biographies

Fiona Magowan, Queen's University Belfast

Fiona Magowan is a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences and a Fellow of the Senator George J. Mitchell Institute for Global Peace, Security and Justice at Queen’s University Belfast. Her research interests span music, movement and the senses; religion and ritual; and emotion and conflict transformation in the arts. She has conducted fieldwork in Aboriginal Australia, Brazil and Mozambique and published seven books.

Hastings Donnan, Queen's University Belfast

Hastings Donnan is Director of the Senator George J. Mitchell Institute for Global Peace, Security and Justice at Queen’s University Belfast. He is a Fellow of the British Academy, a Member of the Royal Irish Academy and a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences. He chairs the Esperanza Trust and the British Council's Newton Fund Programme for Social Science. He has conducted field research on contested borders in Ireland and Pakistan and has published over twenty books and lectured worldwide.

Published

2019-12-23