Singing, Cultural Understanding, and Wellbeing

Cross-Cultural Research Approaches – Introduction to Part II

Authored by: Annabel J. Cohen , Lily Chen-Hafteck

The Routledge Companion to Interdisciplinary Studies in Singing

Print publication date:  June  2020
Online publication date:  May  2020

Print ISBN: 9781138061224
eBook ISBN: 9781315162546
Adobe ISBN:


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The chapters in Part II on singing and cultural understanding report studies that speak to the issue of whether singing in its relation to culture can improve the wellbeing of individuals and societies. This is a broad topic encompassing complex issues to which anthropologists, sociologists, psychologists, linguists, and ethnomusicologists have directed much attention. One premise underlying the chapters presented in this part is that singing might serve to reduce cultural bias and promote cultural understanding. The idea connects to a further premise that singing offers common ground and opportunity to co-operate toward aesthetic or culturally significant choral goals. These potentials of singing might also contribute to movement from an ethnocentrism to global understanding. Using cross-cultural and ethnographic approaches to research that examines these issues, the chapters provide multiple perspectives to deepen understanding of singing and culture and their reciprocal relationships.

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