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Centre for Creative Ethnography

Being Creative Module

Being Creative: Music, Media and the Arts

Through sound, music, visual arts, and the media, so much of our creativity and entertainment extends beyond the use of words. Yet, humanities and social sciences often solely rely on the analysis of text-based culture. This module (ESA1001) examines how expressive forms beyond words can communicate complex meanings and engage humans in evocative ways across the world. The course focuses on three regions, their choice depending on the lecturers teaching each year. So far, they have included Aboriginal Australia, Ireland, India, Greece, Iran and, all areas in which QUB anthropologists have carried out extensive field research. The module explores how aural, visual, and embodied cultures engage practices of pleasure, contention, resistance, spirituality and healing through the arts. In line with the module’s focus, the assessment includes the analysis of non-textual outputs such as short films, performance, art and sound recording.

Modules in ethnomusicology and the anthropology of performance have always attracted students from different disciplines. With its focus on non-textual cultures, it provides important alternative insights to understanding the critical role that the arts play in all spheres of human life, informing religious, economic and political engagements through local and global perspectives. Its intercultural and cross-cultural comparative dimensions further extend relevant programmes in QUB’s Faculty of   the Humanities and other Faculties.

Lyra virtuoso, Yiorgos Kontogiannis 

Hindu worship in Belfast, 2012

Heather Kamarra Shearer’s exhibition, Four Directions, Naughton Gallery 2016 

Mural, East Belfast 2022

Chinese New Year, Belfast 2007