South Asia

Organized Panel Session

2 - Listening to Cinema on Radio across South Asia

Friday, July 6
4:30 PM - 6:00 PM
Location: Cypress, New Building

This paper poses commercial cinema as a unique listening experience in S. Asia. Building on recent works on popular aurality, it argues that we need to depart from the dominant national conventions in writing histories of technologies that defied newly divided national cartographies of erstwhile undivided colonial geographies and infrastructures. Gramophone records and radio were two significant tools that facilitated multinational listening in the early post-colonial moment when the national governments of India and Pakistan came down heavily on film music as a source of moral corruption in the 1950s. Radio Ceylon and Goa Radio under the Portuguese emerged as two major commercial hubs for film music fans brought up on starvation diets by their governments.  The paper delves further into the programming innovations introduced by such pioneer broadcasters as Ameen Sayani, Gopal Sharma, and Manohar Mahajan. The presentation will close with a discussion of the close and continuous bond that South Asian listeners struck with the broadcasters and film music makers in the sub-continent.   

Ravi Kant

Centre for the Study of Developing Societies, India


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2 - Listening to Cinema on Radio across South Asia

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