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Sarah Raine (Edinburgh Napier University/University of Limerick) - Negotiating Definitions of Cultural Diversity: Music Festivals in Ireland during COVID-19 and Post-Pandemic

Wednesday 20 April 2022, 4.00PM to 5:30 PM

Speaker(s): Sarah Limerick (University of Limerick)


Within this paper, I will be reflecting upon pandemic and (emerging) post-pandemic ethnographic research as a member of FestiVersities, a (HERA funded) research project focusing on cultural diversity, public space, and European music festivals in five countries (2019-2022). Through data gathered through partnership work and action ethnography with three festivals in Ireland, I will discuss the different understanding of cultural diversity that emerged, considering these in relation to genre, place, and festival team. By placing this within the wider national socio-cultural and political context and notions of diversity as held by central public funders and activist groups, I problematise current approaches to both highlighting and address issues in relation to access and inclusion in the Irish music industry. In relation to methodology, in particular popular music ethnography, I will also consider the role of the researcher in continuing times of crisis.


Sarah Raine is a Postdoctoral Researcher in Ethnomusicology at the Irish World Academy of Music and Dance (University of Limerick, Ireland). Sarah’s published research considers issues of gender and generation, authenticity and identity, and the construction of the past and present in popular music scene and industry. She is the author of Authenticity and Belonging in the Northern Soul Scene (Palgrave Macmillan: 2020) and the co-editor of Towards Gender Equality in the Music Industry (with Catherine Strong, Bloomsbury Academic: 2019) and The Northern Soul Scene (with Tim Wall and Nicola Watchman Smith, Equinox Publishing: 2019). Sarah is also the co-Managing Editor of Riffs and acts as a Book Series Editor for Equinox Publishing (Music Industry Studies / Icons of Pop Music) and an Editor for Jazz Research Journal (alongside Nic Pillai).

Attend the seminar in-person, or online via zoom (Meeting ID: 998 9220 5308; Passcode: 390939).

Location: Music Department, Room D003, Sally Baldwin Buildings, Wentworth Way