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Course Information

Instructor Info:Becky Miller
Office Extension x5545
Term: 2014S
Meeting Info: Wednesday
01:00 PM - 03:50 PM Music and Dance Building RECITAL

While ethnomusicology -- the study of music in culture -- has traditionally been relegated to the classroom, the field has, in recent years, spawned interest outside of the academy. Recognizing the importance of multicultural education and outreach, arts organizations, funders, and community groups are focusing on the public presentation of community musics for general audiences. Moreover, ethnomusicologists increasingly are discovering what we at Hampshire already know:  Non Satis Scire (to know is not enough). To this end, some ethnomusicologists engage in research that results in direct and tangible contributions to the communities in which they work. These initiatives include such diverse projects such as public health and HIV/AIDS education, community economic growth, and other concerns of cultural and musical sustainability.

This course examines the field of Applied (or "Engaged") Ethnomusicology through a survey of recent work and scholarship and through engaging in applied work in our community in the Pioneer Valley.

Course Objectives:

In this course, students will learn about applied ethnomusicology as well as how to document and present the musical culture of a specific community in the Pioneer Valley. Students will learn (or fine tune) fieldwork methodologies such as interviewing, oral history, photography, and audio and video recordings.  Prerequisite: Prior coursework in ethnomusicology, anthropology, or cultural studies; previous fieldwork experience is preferred.

Evaluation Criteria:

There will be weekly required reading assignments; please be sure to bring reading to class because we will work directly with the texts.

Final Project, Part I: Fieldwork materials and Narrative ethnography::  Students will select a musical community at which to conduct fieldwork.  There, they will conduct fieldwork resulting in fieldnotes, interview transcriptions, photographs, audio/video recordings of performances, a mock grant proposal, and other assignments.  In addition to these fieldwork products, students will also hand in, at the end of the semester, a 10-15 page paper (to be discussed).

Final Project, Part II:  "Giving Back" -- Students will also complete a project that will return something to this community, such as organizing a concert, creating a short video or audio documentary, writing a series of journalistic articles, creating a webpage, writing a full grant proposal, or a project of your creation (with permission of instructor). In short, something that capitalizes on the fieldwork that students conduct over the semester in conversation with the community leaders.  

Additional Info:

Required Texts/Materials, available at Amherst Books, 8 Main Street, Amherst 413.256.1547

Ives, Edward D. The Tape Recorded Interview: A Manual for Field Workers in Folklore and Oral History.  Knoxville:  The University of TN Press, 2nd Edition, 1995.  

Barz, Gregory, Singing for Life: HIV/AIDS and Music in Uganda, 2005: Routledge 

Equipment:  Camera (digital), video camera, digital recorder.  Media Services has all of these except still cameras (which you will need to buy or borrow if you don’t already have one).  Please plan in advance your equipment needs, since Media Services checks out equipment on a first come, first served basis.  Fill out a request form at least one week in advance of when you need the equipment.

Class attendance/late policy:

You can miss up to two (2) classes, no excuses needed.  Class begins at 1:00 pm; lateness counts as an absence as does leaving early.