About Us

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We are an international group of academics, musicians, music educators and human rights professionals who believe passionately that “music is food for the soul”, as the Chishti Sufis of South Asia teach — موسیقی غذا روح است — and that in accordance with Article 27 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, all musicians and listeners of Afghanistan should be free to draw upon this precious spiritual and cultural resource without fear. Our Lead Coordinator is Dr Katherine Butler Schofield, Senior Lecturer in South Asian Music and History at King’s College London.

The musicians of Afghanistan and their extraordinarily rich musical heritage face an unprecedented time of crisis right now. The Taliban are ideologically opposed to all music, and to all those who perform and teach music. On 26th August 2021 they announced their intention to ban music again, as they did in 1996–2001, and to prevent musicians from pursuing their professions.

The aim of the Campaign is to advocate for all of Afghanistan’s endangered musicians, from master rabab players to the latest pop stars, with a particular focus on hereditary and professional musicians, music professors and master-teachers (ustāds), women and girls, and those who have been exposed in the media.

We are not involved in any evacuation or resettlement efforts, and cannot help any Afghan leave the country or find asylum elsewhere.

All written content on this site is under copyright, and licensed under a CC-BY-NC 4.0 licence. This means you can copy and distribute it in any medium or format, and remix, modify, and build upon the material: as long as it is not for profit; you credit us as authors; and you indicate if and where changes were made.

Views expressed on this website are those of the Campaign and not of any of our employers.

You can contact us via afghanmusicians21@protonmail.com