Cosmopolitan Intimacies: Malay Film Music of the Independence Era
Launching in June 2018
by Adil Johan
The golden age of Malay film in the 1950s and 1960s was the product of a musical and cultural cosmopolitanism in the service of a nation-making process based on ideas of Malay ethnonationalism, initially fluid, increasingly homogenised over time. The commercial films of the period, and in particular their film music, from national cultural icons P. Ramlee and Zubir Said, remain important reference points for Malaysia and Singapore to this day. This is the first in-depth study of the film music of the period. It brings together ethnomusicological and cultural studies perspectives.
Written in an engaging manner, thoroughly illustrated and incorporating musical scores, the book will appeal to dedicated film fans, musicians, composers and film-makers interested in Southeast Asia and the Malay world. But equally, the conceptual framework will be of interest to a broad range of scholars of Southeast Asia, as it brings together ideas of cosmopolitanism and cultural intimacy to narrate a history of nation-making in the region.
"A dynamic interweaving of the ‘intimate’ relationships between Malay film music and the paradoxes in the making of postcolonial Malaysia and Singapore." —Tan Sooi Beng, Universiti Sains Malaysia
“Cosmopolitan Intimacies is the first overarching study of its kind. It fills an important lacuna and opens a new vista onto the multifaceted world of Malay film music and its ongoing meaning and relevance.”—Anna Morcom, Royal Holloway, University of London
Adil Johan is a saxophonist, ethnomusicologist and research fellow at the Institute for Ethnic Studies (KITA) in the National University of Malaysia.
Publication Year: 2018
416 pages, 229mm x 152mm
34 b/w images
42 musical transcriptions