Welcome to Music 328C where you will discover that music “from away” has the power to broaden your musical horizons and shine new light on your current musical surroundings. When you embark on a study of World Music “(you) shall not cease from exploration and the end of all (your) exploring will be to arrive where (you) started and know the place for the first time” (paraphrasing T.S. Elliot).

In the first half of the course you will explore the nature of ethnomusicological inquiry, beginning with its key concepts and then an overview of music around the world with particular attention to the worldwide flow of musical ideas. In the spirit of “thinking globally, acting locally,” you will learn about the ethnomusicology of Canada with particular attention to the fiddle, our unofficial Intangible Cultural Heritage (as inscribed by UNESCO). Naturally, it is impossible to study music without studying dance, so you will be introduced to the fascinating world of ethnochoreology, world dance.

The second half of the course will be devoted to two music cultures and one dance culture. You will re-visit Canada by learning about her iconic songcatchers. Then you shall quickly move from the familiar to the exotic – the Japanese flute called the shakuhachi. With its long and colourful history as a tool for meditation and as a weapon in the hands of monks acting as spies, you will get a vivid view of a musical tradition that is unlike anything found in the West.

Next will be an examination of England’s vernacular (folk) dances – Country Dance and Morris Dance. They both have a fascinating story to tell as they traveled from the courts of England to the village greens. Jane Austen fans are in for a few surprises.

In the following weekly course descriptions, each “week” of course material will be delivered in two lectures per week. The textbook for the course is  Simone Kruger, Ethnography in the Performing Arts: A Study Guide (Palatine, 2008) – available online for free download. It will be the central resource for a music and dance ethnography you will compile with information gathered from your family and friends.

WebCT Connect

Aside from the lectures and the listening tests, all the components of the course can be accessed online from anywhere via WebCT Connect (the successor to Vista), using your WCL (Campus Wide Login) password and username. This ease of access includes the two written exams which are made available in a one-day window of opportunity per exam, at the middle and end of the course term. After logging in, one time only, each student can write the exam during a three-hour window of opportunity. Also, the reading journals, presentation or ethnography will be submitted online. In theory, this class is almost paper-less. In many cases, marks are issued instantly, via your individual account on the WebCT M328C website, after the project has been assessed by the instructor.

Course Requirements

Presentation or Ethnography 15 %
Mid-term and End-of-Term Exams (20 % each) 40 %
Mid-term and End-of-Term Listening Exam (10 % each) 20 %
Weekly Reading Journal (12 readings) 12 %
Weekly online Discussion Forum (13 weeks) 13%

Student volunteers provide a major component of the course in the form of presentations that will consist of a dance genre or world music that is of interest to them.

The School of Music expects the grades awarded in this course will bear some reasonable relation to established university-wide practices with respect to both levels and distribution of grades. In addition, the School of Music will follow policy with respect to “Intellectual Honesty,” and “Academic Discipline”. (See the current general calendar.)

Lecture Schedule

Each “week” consists of two lectures.

Week 1 Course Introduction

Objectives: To learn about the expectations and requirements of the course. You will be introduced to some key concepts that are central to the lecture series.

Topics: Triangulation Reflexivity, Ethnography

Recommended movie: The Visitor (2007)

Week 2 Music Around the World, part 1

Objectives : To see how music is expressed and experienced in a personal selection of nation-states and cultural zones around the world.

Topics : Cultural Diffusion, Polygenesis, Heterophony, Polyrhythms, Divisive Rhythms, Additive Rhythms, Multimetre, Chironomy, Raga, Tala, Maqam, Dastgah, Samaaii, Aksak, Compas

Recommended movie: Latcho Drom (1993)

Week 3 Music Around the World, part 2

Objectives : To continue the exploration of the diffusion of rhythms across the Latin and Black Atlantic, and the spread of powerful musical concepts from the “Middle of the Earth” (China) and the heartland of First Nations powwow.

Topics: Hemiola, Villancico, Cross Rhythms, Hocket Rhythms, Bell Pattern, Clave Pattern, Tresillo, IP (Intellectual Property), Vocables, Push-up, Ya-yueh court music, horizontal harps

Recommended movie: Powwow Highway (1998)

Week 4 Ethnomusicology

Objectives : To discover the critical theories and investigative terminologies that are used in the study of an ethnic music, followed by an application of some of those terms to a famous World Music Group, the 12-Girls Band from China.

Topics : Comparative Musicology, Ethnomusicology, Ethnography, Bimusicality, Etic-Emic, Three Part (Tripartite) Analysis, Text-context, Othering, Orientalism, Occidentalism, Neo-colonialism, Globalisation, Diaspora, Grey-out, Hybridisation, Holism

Recommended movie: The Red Violin (1998)

Week 5 The Fiddle: Canada’s Intangible Cultural Heritage?

Objectives : To investigate the fiddle in Canada as a form of music performance and repertoire that could be identified as one of its “heritage” artifacts.

Topics : Intangible Cultural Heritage, Double jig, Breakdown, Crooked music, Podorhythmie (tapements de pieds), Scotch snap, Cut, Shuffle, Fire in the Kitchen, Don Messer

Recommended movie: The Boys and Girl of County Clare (2003)

Week 6 Choreology: The Study of Dance

Objectives : To understand the rudiments of the study of dance in the West and around the world.

Topics : Choreology, Ethnochoreology, Homo Ludens, Kinesthetic Quotient (KQ), Multiple Intelligences (MI), Rhythmics, Mimesis (mime), Chironomy, Proxemics (proximity), Delsartes, Dalcroze

Recommended movie: Shall We Dance? (Japanese setting, 1996)

Week 7a Ethnochoreology: The Study of World Dance

Objectives : To appreciate the social theories generated by triangulating Western dance with the rest of the world.

Topics : 3 Ds, Presentation Dance, Participatory Dance, Proscenium, Fourth Wall, Sagelore, Fakelore, Maori Haka, Japanese Geisha and Oiran, South Asian Devadesi, Bharata Natyam and Kathak, Korean Kisaeng and Buchae-chum, Chinese Yiji and Yangge, Phillipine Tinikling, , Dai Ailian

Recommended movie: Strictly Ballroom (1992)

Week 7b (Fall Semester) Christmas Wassailing

Objectives : To discover the folk roots of contemporary Christmas traditions

Topics : Wassail, Calling Songs, Seasonal Calling Songs, Street Songs and Calls, Busking/Cadging, Mummers, Misrule, Liminality, Carnivalesque, Mikhail Bakhtin, Lord of Misrule, Misrule extortion, Carnival laughter, Pagan vestige, Neopaganism

Recommended movie: Under the Greenwood Tree (BBC TV 2006)

Week 7b (Spring Semester) May Day

Objectives : To learn how the most popular high day of the year transformed into an innocuous long week-end.

Topics :  Beltane, Walpurgis Night, May “nuts”, Whitsuntide, Whitsun Ale, Merrie England, Arts and Crafts Movement, Neopaganism, The Golden Bough (1890), Misrule, Carnivalesque, Mikhail Bakhtin, Transgression, Cultural Inversion, Busking/Cadging, Misrule, Liminality,  Lord of Misrule, Misrule extortion, Carnival laughter, Neopaganism

Recommended movie: The Wicker Man (1973)

Week 8 Canadian Songcatchers

Objectives : To discover the prominent Anglo and Franco Canadians who have contributed to the Canadian identity as ethnomusicologists and song-catchers.

Topics : CanCon, CRTC (Canadian Radio and Telecommunications Commision), Revivalism, Vertical Mosaic, Transculturalism, First Folk Song Revival, Second Folk Song Revival, La Musique Populaire, Ernest Gagnon, Marius Barbeau, Edith Fowkes, Helen Creighton, Phil Thomas, Parody Ballads, Malanka, Robert Klymasz

Recommended movie: Songcatcher (2000)

Week 9 Zen Buddhism and Music

Objectives : To study an alternate appreciation of the music experience

Topics : Buddhology, Sensei (teacher) Uchideshi (student), Daishihan (graduate with distinction), Ryū (lineage or school of traditional art), Iemoto (current head of a lineage), Sengoku Jidai (Warring Period), Sho gyō mu jō (state of impermanence), Mono no aware, yūgen (melancholy), Wabi (rustic, imperfect), Sabi (patina of age), Shibui (simple), Dō (the way” or system of enlightenment or understanding), Zendō ( the “way” as defined by Zen Buddhism in Japan), Zen (concentration), Zazen (seated meditation), Kinhin (active meditation – walking), Geidō (fine arts), Bushidō (martial arts), Sanmi-ittai (three-part process), Gi (technique), Ki (breath), Kata (action, rote repetition), Shin (attitude), Shizen (here and now), Shoshin (beginner’s mind), Ken (epiphany), Flow (Mihály Csíkszentmihályi), Peak Experience (Abraham Maslow), Kwatz! (instant understanding), Shitei-funi (master-disciple relationship), Kuden (aural transmission)

Recommended movie: Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter…and Spring (2003)

Week 10 Zen Buddhism and the Japanese Shakuhachi Flute

Objectives : To examine the Zen Buddhist context that inspires the music and performance practices of a flute.

Topics : Yo scale, In scale, Honkyoku (sacred repertoire), Jo (prelude), Ha (body of the music), Kyū (rushing coda), Suizen (breath meditation), Ki-ai (pregnant pause, caesura), Ma (“space”), Ichi-on jōbutsu (single note, enlightenment), Ten Bulls, Ten Ox-herding pictures

Recommended movie: Baraka (1992)

Week 11 English Country Dance:
Gesunkunes Kulturgut and Puritan Opposition

Objectives : To understand the complex history of dance as it transforms from one historical context to the next stage in cultural history.

Topics : Longways set, Progressive, Figures, Dandy, Kit (Pochette) violin, Mnemonic (aide-memoire), John Playford, English Dancing Master (18 editions, 1651-1728), Gesunkenes Kulturgut, Arcadian utopia, Entropy

Recommended movie: Pride and Prejudice (2005)

Week 12 English Morris Dance

Objectives : To explore the dynamism of misrule applied to a folk dance genre.

Topics : Moresco, Moors, Misrule (aka Transgression), Vestige of Paganism, Lord of Misrule, Fool. Collector, Cadging, Parody, Extortion, Mikhail Bakhtin, Carnivalesque, Cultural template

Recommended movie: Morris: A Life With Bells On (2009)

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