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Popular Music in India: 1901–86

  • Peter Manuel


The dramatic development of popular music in India illustrates some of the complex and varied ways that South Asians have used art and entertainment as a means of adapting and relating to the social transitions accompanying modernisation. Indian popular music, nevertheless, has been all but ignored in scholarly literature, whether musicological or sociological; this article endeavours to provide a basis for future inquiries by providing a descriptive outline of the development of modern Indian commercial music in the twentieth century.



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Amunugama, Sarath. 1980. Notes on Sinhala Culture (Colombo: Gunasena)
Basu, Siddhartha, Kak, Sanjay and Krishen, Pradip. 1981. ‘Cinema and society: A search for meaning in a new genre’, in India International Centre: Quarterly (03)
Beeman, W. 1981. ‘The use of music in popular film: east and west’, in Indian International Centre: Quarterly (03)
Biswas, Anil. 1975. The ghazal in Indian film', Sangeet Natak, 37, 1215
Dubashi, Jagannath. 1986. ‘Cassette piracy: high stakes’, India Today, 31 03
Karnad, Girish. 1981. ‘Comments from the Gallery’, in India International Centre: Quarterly (03)
Khandekar, Sreekant. 1986. ‘Classical music: the new awakening’, India Today, 15 03
Krishen, Pradip. 1981. ‘Introduction’, in India International Centre: Quarterly (03)
Manuel, P. 1979 a. ‘The Light-Classical Urdu Ghazal-Song’, MA thesis, UCLA
Manuel, P. 1979 b. ‘The relationship between musical and prosodic rhythms in the light-classical Urdu ghazal-song’, in Studies in the Urdu Ghazal and Prose Fiction (Madison: University of Wisconsin)
Manuel, P. 1986. ‘The evolution of modern thumri’, in Ethnomusicology, 30:3, pp 470–90
Ranade, Ashok. 1984. On Music and Musicians of Hindoostan (New Delhi: Promilla)
Rangoonwalla, Firoze. 1975. 75 Years of Indian Cinema (New Delhi: Indian Book Company)
Sarkar, Kobita. 1975. Indian Cinema Today: An Analysis (New Delhi: Sterling)

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Popular Music in India: 1901–86

  • Peter Manuel


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