Annotation to Sounds from the Margins

Romani literature publisher KHER and the Faculty of Humanities of Charles University Prague present the collective monograph Sounds from the Margins. Based on their fieldwork, the team of authors deal with the music of marginalized groups in various countries. The monograph is the first specialized publication of the recently established publishing house focused on e-books. Sounds from the Margins can be downloaded free of charge at


Music can not only be listened to and performed, but also thought about. It reveals to us much about ourselves and the surrounding society. What do, e.g., Czech Roma applauding during a concert in the Rudolfinum, Jews singing in Prague synagogues, Viennese Czechs at a ball, fado singers in Lisbon, and a Hindu female ascetic singing spiritual songs have in common? Music reflects and/or empowers group identity, which is especially true in the case of minorities. The leading Czech ethnomusicologist Zuzana Jurková of the Institute for Ethnomusicology at the Faculty of Humanities published, along with her students, a book about individuals or groups on the margins who aim at changing their situation. Music thus serves as a tool of this effort and, at the same time, as its mirror.


"The book appears in two language versions (Czech and English) and in different formats – pdf, Kindle and e-Pub – which are particularly appropriate for ethnomusicology so that it will be easily available here as well as abroad," explains Zuzana Jurková. The book is accompanied by photographs and video examples from the fieldwork.


"The collective monograph Sounds from the Margins is a unique opportunity for KHER to start realization of its intention to deal with propagation of writings of Roma as well as specialized literature from the discipline of Romani studies. This literature, despite the fact that it often brings crucial information about the life of marginalized groups, mostly stays hidden and is thus approached only by a narrow circle of academicians. Its publication in the form of e-books available free of charge could help to spread these findings," says KHER's Lukáš Houdek about the intentions of the publisher.



Publication to download here.