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PMC Lecture: Women, Music and the Art of Survival in Post-Colonial Korea
February 7, 2019 @ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
Joshua Pilzer, (Associate Professor of Ethnomusicology and affiliate faculty of the Center for the Study of Korea, University of Toronto)
Pilzer is a scholar of Korean and Japanese music. He is the author of Hearts of Pine: Songs in the Lives of Three Korean Survivors of the Japanese ‘Comfort Women’ (2012) and is currently finishing another ethnographic book on the musicality of everyday life among Korean victims of the atomic bombing of Japan and their children.
Free and open to the public. No ticket required.
In this talk I discuss some of my findings throughout fifteen years of researching the relationships between women’s music, traumatic experience, and survival in contemporary South Korea. I discuss music in the lives of several Korean survivors of the Japanese military “comfort women” system and Korean victims of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima; and I consider some examples closer to home in North America. Women’s music, in these myriad circumstances of traumatic experience, provides a forum where survivors can practice emotional and physical control, cultivate voices, and struggle for mastery over traumatic memories. It is also a means of creating coherent senses of self and culture, forging and reinforcing links between self and society, challenging the edifices of male power, and creating different kinds of ritual transformation in everyday life.