Dr Lijuan Qian
School of Music and Theatre
Dr Lijuan Qian is a post-doctoral researcher at the Department of Music, UCC. She completed a PhD in Ethnomusicology at the University of Sheffield in 2011 and a MA in Musicology at the Shanghai Conservatory of Music in 2005. Lijuan is mainly working on mass aesthetics and popular music in China, have been published a monograph and several articles in the field. Lijuan is also the award holder of various grants including: CAROLINE, IRC postdoctoral Fellowship; The Scientific Research Foundation from China State Education Ministry; and ORS from British Government, and University Studentship and Excellence Exchange Scheme from University of Sheffield.
IRC post-doctoral fellowship (2015-2017)
The project is entitled: "Making Sense of TV Music Talent Show in China: An Audience Ethnography". By means of interdisciplinary methods used across popular music studies, media studies, and contemporary Chinese studies, this research analyses the newly emergent aesthetic of TV audiences toward popular music in China, assessing its impact on the shape of contemporary popular culture in that nation. This research asks, how do TV audiences work in contemporary China, what spaces are opened up for audience action and interaction, and what are the ramifications of this both within and beyond China itself.
CAROLINE post-doctoral fellowship (2017-2020)
As a global phenomenon, changing ecosystems and human lifestyles have brought about the rapid loss of many musical and other cultural traditions. A growing awareness of the importance of maintaining cultural diversity has led to actions by local, national and international agencies to promote cultural sustainability.
My project will contribute fresh knowledge on the maintenance of threatened culture heritage by building on recent theoretical advances in applied ethnomusicology. Current research in this discipline emphasises that the key step in sustaining cultural heritage is to sustain the people produce this culture, acknowledging all culture-impacting factors as part a whole ecosystem. Meanwhile, researchers note that many actions undertaken by governmental and international agencies are based on outsiders’ own interpretations as to what cultural heritage is and how it might best be sustained, as external experts speak over the voices and sensitivities of culture bearers themselves. In my work, I will combine these insights, plus associated ideologies and methodologies, drawing also on the lessons of a body of practical experience developed over many years in rural areas of Yunnan, an economically underdeveloped, multi-ethnic province in China.
First, I will analyse the ‘Tufeng’ projects which were carried out primarily among the Pumi, Yi and Wa ethnicities. The longterm partners among these communities are by now highly experienced in reflecting why and how various projects succeeded or failed and what lessons I can draw for future work. Notably, these projects give significant position to women participants, since men are regularly labour migrants working far from home. Second, I will develop a new set of projects among the Miao and Zhuang ethnicities in collaboration with the Yunnan-based NGO Eco-Women. Eco-Women has existing partnerships with these communities and offers a medium-scale NGO setting that brings special expertise to matters of women’s sustainable economic development.