More than Mimicry Alternative Modernities in the Birth and Development of Iban Popular Music

Connie Lim, Keh Nie (2021) More than Mimicry Alternative Modernities in the Birth and Development of Iban Popular Music. In: Made in Nusantara Studies in Popular Music. Routledge Global Popular Music Series, 1 (1). Routledge, New York, pp. 172-183. ISBN 9780367428464

[img] PDF
dr connie.pdf

Download (276kB)
Official URL:


Tis chapter provides a critical overview of the birth and development of Iban popular music in Sarawak from the 1950s to the 1970s. It examines the potential of popular music historiography to uncover paradoxes of modernity in the socio-cultural meanings of song lyrics of the Iban who are the largest indigenous ethnic group in Sarawak. During this pivotal period in Malaysian history, the Iban experienced modernity in fux through the agents of change from Brooke’s rule to British colonialism to the Federation of Malaysia. Inspired by Barendregt’s (2014) “alternative conceptions of modernity” in Southeast Asian popular music, this chapter traces the historical introductions of Western music in Sarawak from the Brooke Dynasty, the establishment of Iban Radio under Radio Sarawak during the British colonial era, and the development of the Iban recording industry in the late 1960s during the formation of the Malaysian nation-state. Tese introductions reveal that Iban popular music did not just imitate pop culture but commandeered it as a platform for pre-modern warrior identity, nation-state promotion, and proclaiming pride in regional Sarawakian identity

Item Type: Book Chapter
Uncontrolled Keywords: UNIMAS, University, Borneo, Malaysia, Sarawak, Kuching, Samarahan, IPTA, education, Universiti Malaysia Sarawak
Subjects: M Music and Books on Music > M Music
Divisions: Academic Faculties, Institutes and Centres > Faculty of Applied and Creative Arts
Depositing User: Sanawi
Date Deposited: 30 Jun 2021 10:29
Last Modified: 02 Jul 2021 08:03

Actions (For repository members only: login required)

View Item View Item