Date of Award
Master of Arts (MA)
Communication and Culture
The proliferation of large-scale benefits over the last thirty years has led to debate about the place of the benefit in cultural and political spheres. Acknowledging that cross-cultural flow takes a number of forms, that politics and culture increasingly intermingle, and that the West has a long history and geography tied to exploitation and occupation of other countries, this project discusses four benefits in relation to ideas about myth, narrative, celebrity, and memory. Such benefits as the Concerts for Bangladesh, the Sun City project, Freedomfest (The Nelson Mandela Seventieth Birthday Tribute), and America: A Tribute To Heroes, are explored in relation to cultural-political movements and Western imaginings of Bangladesh, South Africa, and Afghanistan. In so doing, the positional superiority of the West is necessarily reconsidered. Benefits are directional pointers through which music narrates storied sociality, mapping the beats of particular histories and geographies. Emphasizing the importance of hearing, and thereby challenging the visual focus of Western culture, readers are encouraged to hear the maps that benefits project through the traces they inevitably leave in popular landscapes.
Martin, Maryann, "The benefit's place in cultural-political imaginings" (2002). Theses and dissertations. Paper 36.