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Alissa Vik

PhD Candidate , Latin American cultural studies
  • E-mailAlissa.Vik@uib.no
  • Phone+47 55 58 23 78
  • Visitor Address
    HF-bygget, Sydnesplassen 7
  • Postal Address
    Postboks 7805
    5020 Bergen

My dissertation studies expressions of mestizaje, or cultural mixture, in the contemporary music scene of Central Lima, seeking to understand the ways in which independent musicians today articulate the need for social change through their music. These musicians are combining traditional Peruvian rhythms with global ones such as rock and electronica to create innovative musical hybrids through which they negotiate their identities as Peruvians. The combination of traditional and global music is referred to in Peru as simply fusión. Although the ideas of fusión and mestizaje in Latin American music date back to the first arrival of Europeans and the resulting cultural exchange and blending, the term fusión in today’s Lima refers to a very specific phenomenon dating back to the 1970s and bands such as El Polen, who combined psychedelic rock with Andean instruments and rhythms. While there were a handful of innovative fusion bands from the 1970s to the early 2000s, it wasn’t until 10 years ago that the independent music scene in Lima exploded with new bands making fusión, a trend fueled by economic growth and the expansion of the middle classes in Lima. Within this fusion trend, certain musicians and bands set themselves apart by creating musical hybrids with a political or social consciousness. I argue that these bands are engaging in a special kind of activism through their use of traditional musical genres, dress, instruments, and native languages, which has changed the way that both Peruvians and foreigners experience Peruvian music and see Peru, as well as the way that we think about the term mestizaje. My project focuses on several tendencies in fusion music in the independent music scene in Central Lima observed during fieldwork from August 2014 to July 2015. The analysis will focus on the examination of song texts, musical performances, and conversations with musicians.

Journal articles
  • Yri, Jørgen; Vik, Alissa. 2012. Fordommer fordummer ikke så lenge de foredles - En studie om nordmenns inntrykk av Spania og om forskning som studentaktivitet i lavere grads språkstudier. UNIPED (Tromsø). 109-119.
Reports and theses
  • Vik, Alissa. 2011. Tengo el orgullo de ser peruano y soy feliz": Estudio lingüístico-cultural de la representación del dialecto peruano en la música y la identidad nacional . Universitetet i Bergen. 122 pages.

More information in national current research information system (CRIStin)

Ph.D. project: “From nu huayno to música mestiza: New genres, spaces, and identities in contemporary urban fusion music in Lima”