ALTERing NATIVism: Sound Cultures in Post-War Taiwan

cover of ALTERing NATIVism: Sound Cultures in Post-War Taiwan

There has been a paucity of thorough discussion on Taiwan’s postwar sound cultures. What we have nowadays is only biased coverage in favor of specific issues. After years of research and fieldwork, the team curated an exhibition in 2014 on the oral history, primary sources, photographs, and historical materials regarding the landmarks and movements in the development of Taiwan’s sound cultures. In 2015, the team took a step further to invite renowned writers, scholars, composers, curators, and artists to contribute to this book, in which they collectively trace and represent the trajectory and context of Taiwan’s postwar sound making movement.

By virtue of “sound making,” this book transcends the analytic barriers set by the category of music, be it pop electronic, folk, rock, or even experimental. By closely re-listening within different contexts, this book investigates the cultural and political significance of “sound makers” as they crossed swords with authority, and thereby evaded, negotiated, resisted, or subverted sound discipline. The term “altering nativism” refers to rediscovering and collating the traces of Taiwan’s sound “localization,” from which we may reconsider its possibility to be transformed again by “sound making.”

All the contributors to this book have long experiences as cultural practitioners in this field. Chao-Tang Chang, Yang-Kun Fan, Tung-Hung Ho, Yingi Ho, Sun-Quan Huang, Yueh-Chuan Lo, and Shih-Fang Ma are all prominent figures who undertake pioneering efforts to complete this book. The thematic articles and interview transcripts in this book run in concert with the brief introductions to the figures, events, repertoires, and albums they mentioned. Besides, the artists interweave the images of their magnum opuses in the pages, reviving the Zeitgeist on paper.