Friday, March 02, 2007

Rapid Social Change

I was doing my daily read of LGF and came across an interesting item on the Burka Band. An all girl band from Afghanistan. The music is kind of a bland techno, but the words of social commentary are in english and the visuals are interesting.

So I went looking in the comments to see if I could find out more. Commenter Peacekeeper gave a link to this site: Girl band in burka.

Here is the most interesting quote from the article.

The Burka Band has never performed in Afghanistan and at the moment the band is not active. During the Taliban regime music was totally forbidden, and women were not allowed to work. To sing in public could carry a death sentence. Today the country is still very conservative, and there is no market in Afghanistan for the Burka Band's music. The band members have to wait for a European or American record label to help them if they are to make a whole album one day.

- I'd like to play again, but right now it is not possible. Last year there was a big bomb at a concert here in Kabul , and lots of people are still against female singers because the religous leaders condemn it. It will probably take 10 years before we will have real girl bands here in Afghanistan , says Nargiz, who now works in an international organisation in Kabul.
From no music allowed to all girl bands in 10 or even 15 years is amazingly fast progress for a culture.

Given that this song was popular in Germany in 2003 it means that Afghanistan is well on the way to becoming at least a semi-modern country. It also points out the irresistability of Western and especially American culture. The old ways are dying.

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