Risto Pekka Pennanen

music researcher

Pennanen Saari

Ph.D., Docent of Ethnomusicology

Music, Musicians, Soundscape and Colonial Policies in Habsburg Bosnia-Herzegovina, 1878–1918

I am a music researcher and my current research project, funded by the Kone Foundation, focuses on the relations between music, musicians and soundscape in Bosnia-Herzogovina during the period of Austro-Hungarian colonial rule. By expanding the perspective, the project seeks to dismantle the currently pervasive canon of music research in Bosnia and elsewhere. My research focuses on all kinds of musicians and types of music. For one, I will be analysing the significance of made-up traditions pertaining to music and soundscape, in particular, in terms of their role in supporting the colonial power’s attempts to fortify its legitimacy and prevent the spread of South Slavic nationalism. Another important theme in my research is the control and regulation of musicians and soundscape by the colonial Provincial Government, as well as related disciplinary actions, including handing out and revoking professional musician licences, censure, fines, taxation and performance location control. Thirdly, I will be investigating power structures and the constructs of musicianship.

The majority of professional musicians were men and performers of other than western music were primarily locals or foreign Romani. From a gender research standpoint, female music groups are particularly interesting.

I will be working at the Saari Residence from September to October 2015, during which I have the invaluable opportunity to focus on my writing and work on my manuscript.