Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs
Center for Contemporary South Asia

Ahona Palchoudhuri ─ Classical Everyday: An Anthropology of Music in Rural and Urban West Bengal

Wednesday, May 3, 2023

2:00pm to 3:00pm EST

Leung Conference Room, 280 Brook Street

Ahona Palchoudhari is a PhD Candidate in the Department of Anthropology. Ahona's research asks: What kind of anthropological object is music? Is the opposite of the "classical" the “folk”? This presentation is based on twenty months of ethnographic research conducted amongst neighbouring communities of paddy-cultivators, potters and musicians in the Bankura district of rural West Bengal; and amongst aspirants of Indian classical music in the city of Kolkata. It traces concepts of raagtaalgharana and riyaaz from Indian aesthetic theory across milieus of seasonal ritual, mediatized practice, political upheaval, and domestic relation to ask how musical form might sharpen and rearrange the lived experience of resonant ecologies. 

Chaired by: Finnian M.M. Gerety, Religious Studies

Graduate Student Seminar