Japanese Composers in the Multicultural UK: identity tactics and self-exoticism

Book chapter

Cawkwell, Y. 2008. Japanese Composers in the Multicultural UK: identity tactics and self-exoticism. in: Richards, E.M. and Tanosaki, K. (ed.) Music of Japan Today Cambridge Scholars Publishing. pp. 251-256
AuthorsCawkwell, Y.
EditorsRichards, E.M. and Tanosaki, K.

In this article the award winning composer Yumi Hara Cawkwell illustrates the tension between what is perceived as typically Japanese by a western audience and how the same material is perceived within Japan. She discusses the place of Japanese folk and traditional art music such as Gagaku, Kabuki and Noh in Japanese culture and reports that as a result of increasing interest in Japanese culture, some Japanese composers have been asked to write for instruments which they have never seen before.
She concludes that it is not normally possible to be ‘inherently influenced’ by Japanese traditional music, that the musical cultures of ordinary Japanese and Europeans are not much different and that selling false identity however innocently could ultimately give the wrong impression of Japanese culture and people and maintain cultural stereotyping.

KeywordsJapanese music market; cross cultural; contemporary; Gagaku; Kabuki; Noh; Japanese traditional folk music; OKEANOS; aesthetic orientations; musical composition; award-winning Japanese composer; cultural stereotyping; identity; oriental
Book titleMusic of Japan Today
Page range251-256
PublisherCambridge Scholars Publishing
Publication dates
PrintMay 2008
Publication process dates
Deposited16 Jun 2009
Additional information

Cawkwell, Y. H. (2008) 'Japanese Composers in the Multicultural UK: identity tactics and self-exoticism' Published in Music of Japan Today, Richards, E. M. and Tanosaki, K. (eds.) (2008) Cambridge Scholars Publishing pp 251-256.

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