Aditi Krishna: Culture, Music and Nation: Modern Indian nationalism with Indian Classical Music

Aditi's research explores issues of identity-politics, secularism, notions of nationhood and nationalism, and the issue of ownership in the context of Indian classical music relative to post-1991 economic liberalisation and globalisation in India.

Since India's freedom struggle, Indian classical music has been considered integral to Indian culture, increasingly defined in Hindu terms.

Although believed to have Hindu origins, Indian classical music has extensively interacted with folk and regional music at different periods, and the musical traditions brought to south Asia by Muslims.

Despite this, the role and contribution of Muslim musicians have been greatly underplayed for decades despite their crucial role in the emergence of Gharanas (various guilds/lineages of musicians) under courtly patronage in the 18th and 19th centuries.

The crucial developments in post-1991 including the rise in social media, debates on intellectual property rights, the increasing emphasis on individualism as against tradition, growing religious polarisation and its impact on nationhood and Indian nationalism, provided for an important context to study the issues outlined above in relation to the Indian classical music.

Aditi's research will examine the way Indian classical music connects to Indian nationalism in the digital, post-1991 India.

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