In Martin Stokes’ chapter, “The Tearful Public Sphere: Turkey’s ‘Sun of Art’ Zeki Müren,” he touches a lot on the point of “gender deceny,” as he puts it, and talks about how Zeki Müren was able to grow his female fan base because of his sensitivity and awareness of women’s religious practice (311). Müren’s approach to his music and performances, as Stokes describes, “mechanisms at work,” really highlight the thought process that many musicians go through before creating their music, performing for fans, and simply going out into the public eye (311). Because Müren was so focused on creating a persona that was sensitive to women and their practices, he saw in return great success in winning over females of all ages to enjoy his music. The music industry as a whole for Müren was a constant “game,” as Stokes describes, where Müren was “an active player in a world of spectacular competitive rivalry” (311). Stokes describes careers in the music industry in this way almost as a game, where it is a full time commitment to not only creating music and performing for fans, but also manufacturing your own image and maintaining that image throughout you career. This “female-friendly image” Müren so effectively created was looked upon as controversial to some, as Stokes describes, due to the “tradition of cultural dirigisme” and the belittling of women’s social roles in Turkey (309).
This struggle for gender equality is very similar to that of those described by Lortat-Jacob in his piece “Sardinian Chronicles.” The women play a very belittling role in the novel, and there is no mention of women participating in the musical culture of Sardinia. They were only described in the light of “servant” when mentioned in the book, and did nothing more than simply cater to the wishes and desires of their male counterparts. This problem is not often mentioned in modern day America, as our music industry has significant female participation on all levels, but in both Stokes’ chapter and “Sardinian Chronicles,” the belittling of women to a subservient position is still a problem in many countries around the world.
Lortat-Jacob, Bernard. Sardinian Chronicles. Chicago: U of Chicago, 1995. Print.