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Experience and Meaning in Music Performance

ISBN: 9780199811328 | 0199811326
Format: Hardcover
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Pub. Date: 11/29/2013

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How does the immediate experience of musical sound relate to processes of meaning construction and discursive mediation?

This question lies at the heart of the studies presented in Experience and Meaning in Music Performance, a unique multi-authored work that both draws on and contributes to current debates in a wide range of disciplines, including ethnomusicology, musicology, psychology, and cognitive science. Addressing a wide range of musical practices from Indian raga and Afro-Brazilian Congado rituals to jazz, rock, and Canadian aboriginal fiddling, the coherence of this study is underpinned by its three main themes: experience, meaning, and performance. Central to all of the studies are moments of performance: those junctures when sound and meaning are actually produced. Experience-what people do, and what they feel, while engaging in music-is equally important. And considered alongside these is meaning: what people put into a performance, what they (and others) get out of it, and, more broadly, how discourses shape performances and experiences of music. In tracing trajectories from moments of musical execution, this volume a novel and productive view of how cultural practice relates to the experience and meaning of musical performance.

A model of interdisciplinary study, and including access to an array of audio-visual materials available on an extensive companion website, Experience and Meaning in Music Performance is essential reading for scholars and students of ethnomusicology and music psychology.


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