This collection of essays, edited by leading scholars in the field, focuses on how expressive genres such as music, dance and poetry are of enduring significance to social organization.
Research from New Guinea, Indonesia and Taiwan is used to assess how historical changes modify these forms of expression to adjust to the social and political needs of the moment. The volume is unique in exploring the significance of expressive genres for the social processes of coping with and adjusting to change, either from outside forces or from internal ones.
The contributions detail first-hand fieldwork, often conducted over a period of many years, and with each contributor bringing their experience to bear on both the aesthetic and the analytical aspects of their materials.
Comparative in scope, the volume covers Austronesian and non-Austronesian speakers in the wider Indo-Pacific region.