Over the rainbow? On the quest for ‘the social’ in musical analysis

Peter J. Martin

in Music and the Sociological Gaze

Published by Manchester University Press

Published in print October 2006 | ISBN: 9780719072161
Published online July 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781781701492 | DOI:
Over the rainbow? On the quest for ‘the social’ in musical analysis

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This chapter suggests that it is somewhat ironic that some of the ‘new’ musicologists have adopted a distinctly ‘old’ version of sociology, in which musical forms somehow articulate or represent ideological formations. Despite their fondness for the ‘social’ analysis of music, the work of the ‘new’ musicologists shows little awareness of the contours of the contemporary sociological landscape. There is much of interest in the revived concern with the ‘social’ analysis of music, but the new musicologists should be aware of the very considerable gap between their work and the discourse of contemporary sociology.

Keywords: musicologists; sociology; social analysis; musical analysis; musical forms

Chapter.  9491 words. 

Subjects: Media Studies

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