M4GHD brainstorm: how can music create positive change in the world?

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Communal brainstorm: "how can ethnomusicology create positive changes--human development--in the world?" Please sign your entries!

Music contains the ethos - the feeling - of culture. Therefore, understanding music is a great way to understand culture more deeply. And cultural understanding, in turn, is prerequisite to formulating strategies for positive change.

Music triggers a different part of the brain than normal conversation and can allow us to connect with people in a different way. Studying different types of music allows us to connect with all sorts of people, build relationships with them and create a sense of belonging for those who have felt outcasted. -Jenna

Expressing interest in an individual or group's musical culture through ethnomusicological study gives them the opportunity to show their intimate connection with their music and allows them to take on the role of expert and authority figure as they teach others about this music. If one is a newcomer in a culture that differs greatly from one's own, the experience of feeling this kind of empowerment may be a rare occurrence, and getting to participate in one's own music with people who belong the new context could be comforting and instrumental in feeling more welcome. -Nathan

Through the use of participatory action research, truly immersing in the musical culture of a group, rapport with individuals in the group is enhanced.. With the group at the helm, problems may be addressed in a manner which will be more respectful and in fact more effective. -Donna

By engaging in ethno-musicology approaches to human development, we create a sphere of collaboration in the 'positive-change' experience. This allows a reciprocal exchange of cultural knowledge to be taught. Thus, furthering human development to a more holistic and tangible goal. - Sarah Lavimizadeh

Music can align and coordinate thought, feeling and movement among a large group of people...

Music helps express and communicate who we are...

Music can carry messages - specific ones about malaria; broad ones about protest - through words or simply by implicit association. It carries them far and wide, and sustainably....

It can be used both to reassert heritage at the same time as learning about new cultures. This creates a cross-community engagement which is both rooted in the familiar, and which seeks to understand the unknown. This kind of engagement furthers human development by creating bonds between communities and ameliorating tension through education and sharing of culture. - Susie