Paper long abstract:
In the anthropology of popular music, there appears to be a gap between the anthropological analysis of musical communities, and the experiences of our informants. Where anthropologists tend to focus on the historical, political and social meanings of music, the key value of music as a profound aesthetic and sensory experience is often overlooked. Taking my ethnographic research on the popularity of Russian music amongst Germans in Berlin as a starting point, I will explore in this paper how methodologically and theoretically we can put the unique quality of musical expression back to the forefront in order to overcome the gap between anthropological interpretations of music as political and social practice and our informants' experiences of grooving to the music together.
Crises, imagination, and beyond: bringing aesthetics back into the anthropology of (popular) music