Investigating the Transmission Process of Taoist Funeral Music in the Context of Education and Instruction in Guizhou Province, China

Investigating the Transmission Process of Taoist Funeral Music


  • Xiaohui Hu College of Music, Mahasarakham University
  • Phiphat Sornyai College of Music, Mahasarakham University
  • Yotsapan Pantasri College of Music, Mahasarakham University


Taoism, deeply rooted in Chinese culture, is a testament to the nation's heritage and serves as a central element within the broader Chinese civilization. Taoism's rich tradition encompasses funeral ceremonies, a crucial facet of human culture that bids farewell to the departed and honors their memory. The objective of this study is to investigate the transmission process of Taoist funeral music within the context of education and instruction in Guizhou Province, China. The research site, Zunyi City in Guizhou, is strategically located, sharing its borders with Sichuan Province, the birthplace of Taoism, making it an ideal setting for this investigation. Key informants include scholars, casual informants, and general informants, carefully selected based on their expertise and experience in Taoist funeral music. Data analysis relies on qualitative methods, including observation and interviews, to extract rich insights. The results reveal a multifaceted transmission process, including private transmission, accumulation of practice, scripted guidance, oral and heart instruction, and imitation. This study underscores the importance of preserving and transmitting this musical heritage and suggests strategies for its continued safeguarding, particularly in the face of modernization challenges.