Joshua Pilzer

Associate Professor, Faculty of Music
Centre for the Study of Korea




Joshua D. Pilzer is Associate Professor of Ethnomusicology in the Faculty of Music, and an affiliate faculty of the Centre for the Study of Korea. His research focuses on the anthropology of music in modern Korea and Japan, women’s musical worlds, and the relationships between music, survival, memory, traumatic experience, marginalization, disability, public culture, mass media, social practice and identity. He is particularly interested in everyday musical practice as a life resource, and in the “musical” features of so-called extra-musical practices like speech and everyday movement. He is the author of Hearts of Pine: Songs in the Lives of Three Korean Survivors of the Japanese ‘Comfort Women’ (Oxford, 2012) and since 2011 has been conducting fieldwork for his next book project, an ethnography of music and song among Korean victims of the atomic bombing of Japan and their children. That book is tentatively titled The Art of Making Life Work in “Korea’s Hiroshima.” Some graduate seminars he teaches concern sound, music, and everyday life; the social poetics of music; music, culture and health; silence; and fieldwork. Some of his undergraduate courses are about ethnomusicological theory and method; undergraduate surveys of East Asian and other world musics; and thematic courses about music, violence and survival.

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