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Finding an "Equal" Place

Title: Finding an "Equal" Place: How the Designation of the Steelpan as the National Instrument Heightened Identity Relations in Trinidad and Tobago.
Name(s): Nathaniel, Daina, 1974-, author
McDowell, Steve, professor directing dissertation
Steinberg, Phil, outside committee member
Mayo, John, committee member
Wiese, Danielle, committee member
School of Communication, degree granting department
Florida State University, degree granting institution
Type of Resource: text
Genre: Text
Issuance: monographic
Date Issued: 2006
Publisher: Florida State University
Place of Publication: Tallahassee, Florida
Physical Form: computer
online resource
Extent: 1 online resource
Language(s): English
Abstract/Description: The purpose of this study is to examine the nature of national identity in a postcolonial, multicultural nation. Trinidad and Tobago became independent from Britain in 1962 and given its multicultural population, ethnic, political and cultural harmony continue to be point of contention. In 1992, the steelpan was declared the national instrument of this West Indian nation, which won the approval of many but unearthed the dissatisfaction of others. Thus, using the case study of the steelpan in Trinidad and Tobago, this study focuses on the debate surrounding the appropriateness of the steelpan as the national instrument, in an attempt to examine the concerns of ethnic communities in a multicultural nation as they try to find a sense of identity on the national level. Through the examination of newspaper archives, government documents, personal interviews and participant observation, the findings indicate that national identity should be understood beyond the indigenous nature of a cultural practice, and the ethnic community with which it is associated, and instead, should focus on the cross-cultural appeal of the cultural practice as the primary indicator of whether it should be accorded "national" status. This study uses the Cultural Studies methodological and theoretical approach of the "circuit of culture" to unearth the webs of meaning that are formed as cultures negotiate the process of national and cultural identity.
Identifier: FSU_migr_etd-2719 (IID)
Submitted Note: A Dissertation submitted to the Department of Communication in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy.
Degree Awarded: Fall Semester, 2006.
Date of Defense: July 20, 2006.
Keywords: Postcolonial, Nation, National Symbols, Equality, Trinidad And Tobago, Steelpan, Steelband, Nationalism, Cultural Identity, National Identity, Culture
Bibliography Note: Includes bibliographical references.
Advisory Committee: Steve McDowell, Professor Directing Dissertation; Phil Steinberg, Outside Committee Member; John Mayo, Committee Member; Danielle Wiese, Committee Member.
Subject(s): Communication
Persistent Link to This Record:
Owner Institution: FSU

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Nathaniel, D. (2006). Finding an "Equal" Place: How the Designation of the Steelpan as the National Instrument Heightened Identity Relations in Trinidad and Tobago. Retrieved from