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Music 321: Music of South Asia

Guided Annotations

This guide is intended to serve as a resource for students in Music 321:  Music of South Asia as you write guided annotations.

The objective of this assignment is to facilitate your own scholarly research on a particular question that interests you in studying the music of South Asia. You will locate (5) pieces of academic scholarship that largely address a question that you construct on the music of South Asia. You will put these pieces of scholarship into dialogue, with each other, and on your larger question. Your question should come from a larger analytical lens that interests you, like caste, gender, sexuality, and nationalism. Others lenses may be particular genres like kathakali, dohori, or qawwali.


Examples of larger questions that orient your study might include: -

  • How does the performance of qawwali comment on current discourses in the politics of Islam? 
  • How do queer dancers perform song-dance sequences from Indian cinema to articulate their gender identities?


Select five pieces of scholarship, which could include: peer-reviewed journal articles, chapters in single-authored books, and chapters in multi-authored “edited volumes.” A maximum of (2) of your five pieces of scholarship can come from a single book. One of your pieces should include ethnography in its scholarly methods, such that it is clear that the author conducted ethnography to write the resulting piece.