Resonating Occupation

“Resonating Occupation” will be the second workshop held under the ERC-funded Cultures of Occupation in Twentieth Century Asia (COTCA) project at the University of Nottingham.  You can find more information on the COTCA website.


Friday 11 May 2018




A21, Trent Building, University Park, University of Nottingham



Register here




Workshop summary

This workshop will bring together scholars from multiple disciplines and geographic regions working at the nexus of sound, music, and foreign occupation—here defined broadly to include studies of colonialism, imperialism, conflict and war. Discussion at the workshop will revolve around the following questions:

Topics of discussion

How does the context of occupation give rise to distinctive auditory environments and music cultures? Or, what does occupation sound like?

How are sound and music implicated in the disciplining of colonized subjects and aural spaces? 

How do listeners of occupation create new forms of auditory expression?

What might comparative studies of auditory environments in different geographic and temporal contexts contribute to a better understanding of individual cases of occupation, and of occupation more generally?

What can studies of occupation contribute to developing new research methodologies and approaches to studying sound?

Accepted papers

Cultural Convergences and Contestations: Soundscapes of the Port Cities of British Malaya Prior to Independence
Dr Sooi Beng Tan, Universiti Sains Malaysia

Voicing Occupation: Colonial Sensory Regimes and the “Vocal Apparatus”
Iris Blake, University of California, Riverside

The Hush Harbor as Sanctuary: African – American Survival Silence During British/American Slavery
Maya Cunningham, University of Maryland, College Park

Innovative methodologies in a deeply divided context: ‘Sounding Conflict’ in Derry/Londonderry
Dr Fiona McGowan and Jim Donaghey, Queen’s University Belfast

The Semiotics of Literary Sounds and Violence: The Case of J. M. Coetzee
Dimitri Smirnov, University of Graz

Capture the Wail: Women’s Mourning Rituals and Acoustic Reform in Punjab
Kiran Sunar, University of British Columbia

Registering Sonic Histories in a Multiply Occupied Place: Sound and Survivance in Makota’ay, Taiwan
Dr DJ Hatfield, Berklee College of Music

Loud Town, Quiet Base: Olongapo City, Subic Bay, and the U.S. Navy
Kevin Sliwoski, University of California, Riverside

Transforming everyday sounds: the loudspeaker in India, c. 1925 - 45
Dr Vebhuti Duggal, Ambedkar University Delhi

Beyond Java and Bali: Sounds of Occupation During the Colonial Era in Indonesia
Dr Mayco Santaella, Sunway University Malaysia

From Colonial Censorship to Embodied Liberty:“Si Pugo at Togo” and the Filipino Bodabil during Japanese Occupation
Jefferson R. Mendez, Lyceum of the Philippines University-Manila

Việt Nhạc (1948-52): The Last Bastion of Cultural Internationalism in French Indochina
Dr Lonán Ó Briain, University of Nottingham

Songs of Courage and Compassion: Missionaries in Occupied China During WWII
Dr Sophia Geng, College of Saint Benedict and Saint John’s University

A Rhythm of Popular Unity: The Rhythms of Protest Chants
Maayan Tsadka, Haifa University

Further information

Please send all enquiries to:Russell Skelchy

Find out more about:

Getting here


COTCA on Facebook


The event is organised through the Cultures of Occupation in Twentieth Century Asia (COTCA) project, which is funded by the European Research Council Consolidator Grant to the value of more than 1.8 million euros. The project will run for five years from 1 July 2016. 


The University of Nottingham
University Park

telephone: +44 (0) 115 951 5151