Reflections of RABIZ
Armenian pop culture between Yerevan and Los Angeles
An audiovisual presentation by a Dutch anthropologist
TUESDAY, DECEMBER 1, 2015 - 7:30PM
415 E. Broadway, Glendale, CA 91205
Admission is Free.
RIK ADRIAANS is an anthropologist from the Netherlands who speaks Armenian and has spent time living in Armenia and in the Armenian community of Los Angeles, where he has interacted with and observed unique intricacies and aspects of Armenian culture that are oftentimes taken for granted by Armenians. Rik is a PhD candidate at the Central European University in Budapest, Hungary. He holds a BA and MA in anthropology from the University of Amsterdam. His dissertation project examines the relations between Armenia and the Armenian diaspora in Los Angeles through the lens of media and popular culture. With this talk, he will give us a glimpse of our culture through the eyes of an outside observer. Be ready to be surprised!
The word rabiz has its roots in Soviet Armenia’s musicians' trade unions, but is nowadays most commonly used to refer to a genre of folk-pop music that can be heard from the taxis and minibuses of rural Armenia to the banquet halls of Glendale. In this presentation, a Dutch anthropologist explores the different meanings and contexts of rabiz across the Armenian world while relating them to issues of identity, class and diaspora formation. Bringing together images, audio and video from his research on Armenian popular culture in Yerevan and Los Angeles, the presentation will show rabiz to be not merely a musical genre or a subcultural phenomenon, but also a powerful mirror reflecting social and political transformations that have affected the lives of Armenians around the world in the last decades.