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#1 Jul 29, 2018 1:22 pm


Talkshop Referenced in Ph.D. Thesis: Musicking and Identity in Grenada

Yesterday evening I accidentally came across the Ph.D. thesis, by a Canadian, Danielle Dawn Sirek, and thought that it may be of interest to members of this forum. The full title is "Musicking and Identity in Grenada: Stories of Transmission, Remembering and Loss". Here is the link: … renada.pdf

According to the Abstract of the thesis, it was "Conceived as an ethnographic case study of the relationship between musicking and identities, this thesis examines the relationship between musical practices and experiences in the recent historical past, and in the present day, in Grenada. . . I conclude with reflections upon how I might bring these experiences and understandings of Grenadian musicking and its transmission to my own teaching practice and music educational research."

The first two references, below, are found on page 88 and 89. respectively, of the 302-page study.

1. Ms. Sirek mentions that:

"My role as bricoleur and the importance I placed on examining bias and conflicting perspectives within the larger rationale of my study was not only explored introspectively, but also was discussed with many of my informants; for example, below is an excerpt of a discussion with a member of the online forum, the SpiceIslander TalkShop:68 

Interviewee: That’s why we may have to rewrite the tuth [sic] of the Revolution as seen and observed at the grass roots level...There are two different kinds of History my friend; one written by the Professional Historian and the untold Hstory [sic] by the grass roots still waiting to be unearthed... In American libraries, there are no less than ten books written about the Grenada Revolution; my favorite is one written by a Scottish Historian who was an eye witness to the organization of the PRG Government; in his book, he described Bernard Coard as the greatest West Indian economist ever and the Coard/Bishop alliance as the best the West Indies have ever known untill [sic] the USA and USSR destroyed it. However, I have yet to discover a true grass root Historical thesis of the Grenada Revolution.

68 Members of the online forum the SpiceIslander TalkShop, over the course of my last year of research, provided me with much information by way of responding to questions I posted."

2. The thesis continued:

"Interviewer: …I thank you for these words, since it sums up my experience writing on music in Grenada so well. I ask, how can I, as a foreigner, and a young one at that, adequately research and write about things like the revolution at a “grassroots level” and unearth history that may be hidden or thus far unrevealed by regular people, instead of by politicians and professional historians? You are right in observing that so many sources on the revo are terribly inaccurate or are clearly written by people who have never set foot on Grenada…I suppose my question is, knowing that I am Canadian, and not Grenadian, but that I wish to research using a grassroots approach, what advice would you give me, or what would you suggest be included in the thesis? If anyone else has opinions on this I would also welcome them. Thank you.  Excerpt from online conversation 6 January 2013-11 January 2013

In articulating these thoughts to the members of the SpiceIslander TalkShop, I hoped to acknowledge the conflicting perspectives noticed by my informant in his assessment that there ‘are two different kinds of History’, while also recognising the possible limitations of my personal history and outsider status, and how these interact  with my research." 

3. Another reference to Talkshop is found here (footnote 157 at page 187 of the thesis):

"In another song, young people proclaim their place in revolutionary Grenada; their identity as ‘revolutionaries’ means that they are valuable, useful, and that they have purpose, namely to fight together for change:

We are children of the revolution, 
Hear our song,  Our freedom song, 
We will fight, fight, Fight for our rights. 

157 Transcription by a member of the SpiceIslander Talkshop."

My take: The thesis is full of historical tidbits and great information on the functioning Grenadian society and, although I have not completed it as yet, I still recommend a full read.


#2 Jul 29, 2018 1:33 pm

New Historian

Re: Talkshop Referenced in Ph.D. Thesis: Musicking and Identity in Grenada

Musiking - well you learn something new every day.

"In exploring these themes, I illuminate controversies of the transmission of musicking,
conflicts of identity, and the deep sense of loss that has occurred in Grenadian society,
specifically through an analysis of calypso music, soca music, Carnival, and presentday
musicking initiatives intended to ‘rescue’ Grenadian identity and Grenadian values."

Way above my pay grade mate!


#3 Jul 29, 2018 2:51 pm


Re: Talkshop Referenced in Ph.D. Thesis: Musicking and Identity in Grenada

NH, I had a similar reaction to the word that you isolated. Yet, as you know, scholarly titles tend to be wordy.

But, as I mentioned in my original post, the thesis is a recommended full read. You may learn some things about our Grenada; I did. Skim it to confirm.


#4 Aug 03, 2018 1:23 pm


Re: Talkshop Referenced in Ph.D. Thesis: Musicking and Identity in Grenada

Here is another Canadian  , that is fascinated with the subject matter also .

Long rambling piece  . The writer alluded to the real human 'Gree ' dilemma but never developed it  ....
.... Paragraph
( 2 )  The Thesis continued.
>>>>> " Interviewer .......       ........ I thank you for these words " <<<<<<

excerpts from online conversation 6 Jan 2013

....questioning   the PSYCHE of  Gree-ers !!!
Oh , you could call it what you want.


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