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Vol. 7, No 1 | 2018
Juventudes e Músicas Digitais Periféricas

Youths and Peripheral Digital Music
  • Dossiê "Juventudes e Músicas Digitais Periféricas"

    Edited by Frank Marcon, Livia Jiménez Sedano and Otávio Raposo

    In the last years, certain musical rhythms produced and diffused in the post-colonial triangle Africa-America-Europe have met great success at the global level: kizomba, kuduro, rap, funk, forró, or salsa among others. Those musical expressions have become global incredibly fast through international migrations and internet platforms such as the Youtube, Spotify or Facebook, which are essential in the digital era/generation (Feixa, 2015).

    These rhythms have invaded common sonic spaces in the internet and on TV channels, commercial radio stations, public spaces and dance floors on both sides of the Atlantic (Kabir 2014). They acquire new social and political meanings as they are incorporated into new contexts, while giving rise to innovative ways of socialization. Sometimes, they make possible the subversion of urban segregation dynamics, racism, poverty and violence. In those movements of music, people and experiences, there are also power issues related to the diasporas and memories of colonialism that emerge.

    The role of music as mediator of social meanings has proved to be intense on dance floors, bars, streets, neighbourhoods and places where migrants are present. Producers, DJs, MCs, musicians and dancers are some of the agents who promote rituals of music production and dance meetings. In this way, they articulate a polyphony of discourses and meanings of those experiences. New technologies and digital networks are basic to these processes, as they help break the cultural industry barriers for artists living in marginalized areas of the cities.

    The objective of this Special Issue is to explore the following: the rituals of sociability and performance in the above-mentioned contexts; the discursive, rhythmic and bodily narratives; the processes of cultural economy from the perspective of the new circuits and professional experiences, as well as the ways of cultural consumption, political representation and power struggles. It is also our intention to debate the role of certain actors in all these processes-producers, musicians, dancers and DJs-who become agents in the configuration of new ways of understanding contemporary society. Our starting point is the anthropological perspective but it is open to an interdisciplinary analysis. Contributions from other disciplines such as sociology, ethnomusicology, communication sciences, arts, urban and performance studies are welcome.

    The expected results are two: offering a panoptic of perspectives from diverse social sciences about artistic expressions related to digital music and contributing to a larger reflection about the way art and culture acquire a high symbolic value in professional projects and “networks of meaning” (Geertz, 2008) compensating the subaltern status of many young people. We also wish to highlight the role that peripheral youngsters play in the management of digital music and their life experiences in the diverse contexts of power relations that go through age, class, ethnic, religious, gender and life style axes.

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