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Chinked-Out: Leehom Wang and Music of the Huaren Diaspora

Wong, Hei Ting (2015) Chinked-Out: Leehom Wang and Music of the Huaren Diaspora. Master's Thesis, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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This thesis examines the production and circulation of “Chinked-Out,” a form of music created by Leehom Wang, a prominent American-born Taiwanese singer in the Mandarin Chinese popular music (Mandopop) industry. Chinked-Out’s fusion characteristics, as well as Leehom’s multicultural appeal, facilitate its circulation in the huaren (pan-Chinese/ethnic Chinese) diaspora. Huaren refers to people of Chinese ethnicity, rather than the narrow definition of Chinese, which refers to people with Chinese nationality. In spite of the derogatory nature of the term “chink,” Leehom hopes to “repossess the word” and “make it cool” through his music (CNN, 2006). Although he has been experimenting with “Chinked-Out” since 2000, the term first appeared on his album Shangri-La in 2004. Derived from hip-hop with rap as the main component, Chinked-Out is not simply a form of hip-hop but also a fusion of other musical elements such as jazz, rock, Kunqu opera, and Peking opera. Chinked-out blends Western and Chinese instruments. As Leehom puts it, “Chinked-Out is a school of hip-hop” that “incorporates Chinese elements and sounds” (Ibid). This thesis contextualizes the success of Chinked-Out in raising global awareness about Chinese popular music by examining the history of Taiwan, its popular music industry, the role of music in diaspora, and Leehom’s personal musical style and image.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Wong, Hei Tinghew25@pitt.eduHEW25
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairWeintraub, Andrew N.anwein@pitt.eduANWEIN
Committee MemberCassaro, James P.cassaro@pitt.eduCASSARO
Committee MemberSteingo, Gavinsteingo@pitt.eduSTEINGO
Date: 9 September 2015
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 13 April 2015
Approval Date: 9 September 2015
Submission Date: 11 July 2015
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Number of Pages: 94
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > Music
Degree: MA - Master of Arts
Thesis Type: Master's Thesis
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: Leehom Wang, Chinked-Out, Taiwan, Mandopop, diaspora
Date Deposited: 09 Sep 2015 13:15
Last Modified: 15 Nov 2016 14:29


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