ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Do We Dare to Act Differently?

Shifts in Global Economic Power

Today's tourist is increasingly from the Global South, the emigrant is from the Global North, and the ethnographer is of colour, and the subject "white". Global shifts in economic power have brought about changes that have implications at many levels. This article reflects on the underlying causes of the changes they observe in the culture of music in Goa.

Although it is never absolutely quiet, restful, relaxing or calm in the hub city of Panjim, Goans continue to echo the sentiment of sossegado in their daily lives. This is particularly difficult when considering the growing cacophony of tourism; the results of which are measured blessings and unintended consequences of an expanded economy. But there remains a vestige of quietude in this deep amalgam of Portuguese and Indian culture despite these changes and challenges. This sentiment continues to be a part of the environment that we have experienced since 2009 – as we have returned to Goa to continue inquiries about the role of tourism in transforming its music culture.

During this past year, however, we encountered unforeseen challenges to the sossegado we had come to expect. While having lunch in a local Fontainhas restaurant we began preparations for an afternoon and evening of interviews with informants confirmed just a few days earlier. It was the same with each trip we had taken to Goa: there would be a slow start, acclimatising to the environment, checking and arranging our supplies and recording equipment at Panjim’s Heritage Inn, and then following up emails with phone calls to our key contacts. Within a day or two there would be a deluge of contacts and appointments to speak with and/or arrangements to hear local musicians. This would be the case whether in high season (January-March) or in low season (May-August).

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