Kai Viljami ABERG  

Country of residence


Brief introduction

Adjunct Professor on study on traditional music, University of Eastern Finland


Ph.D, Cultural Studies (2002)

Academic profile

The European Union has often been associated with democratic consolidation and fundamental rights. At the same time we have seen, that there are many minorities like Roma who have been discriminated. Roma groups are represented in different contexts, times and places in different ways. Many of these representations have remained largely static across long periods of time and others seem more open to change. One context in which Roma representations is successfully negotiated between Roma and non-Roma is the multicultural spaces of music. As a proud emblem of achievement, music (traditional, gospel, popular) is increasingly playing a significant role in the creation of the modern, trans-national Roma community. I point to the diversity of musical expressions of various Roma groups, and also indicate common features among them. Research aim is a new attitude to interpretation, rejecting the idea that the Roma music contains many meanings depend the contexts where it is used by focusing on social aspects of musical behaviour and the role of various music genres in Roma societies. The work can be characterized as featuring a substantial, intensive ethnographic component. Analyses challenges commonsense representations by asking what the music of the Roma means to the Roma people themselves.


  • The Music of the Finnish Roma (2006)
  • The Traditional Songs of the Finnish Roma (2008)
  • The Gospel Songs of the Finnish Roma (2011)


Local and global Roma music, historical, cultural and social context of the music

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