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A piano is a piano is...

If one is going to challenge, from an ethnomusicological point of
view, the idea that an acoustic piano, as opposed to an electronic
piano, is the "real" piano, then cultural theory is wreaking havoc
upon the traditional way ethnomusicologists classify instruments.
From the latter point of view a piano is a plucked zither.  Some
piano synthesis algorithms do not even model a plucked zither.
So if the definition of the piano is to be expanded, who wins,
the anthropologists or the organologists?

Linda Seltzer

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