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1 - On world music as a concept in the history of music scholarship

from Part I - Histories of world music

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  05 December 2013

Philip V. Bohlman
Affiliation:
University of Chicago
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Summary

There are traditions of scholarship and thought that take the concept of a world-music history as a point of departure. This chapter examines early scholarly literature, central issues such as processes in which twentieth-century works that set out to narrate and comments on the history of world music. It explores the role that the world-music concept, viewed historically, has played in the recent history of music scholarship. For the people whose culture turned into Western civilization, music was developed inexorably to greater complexity until it reached various kinds of climax in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The chapter summarizes some of the landmarks among the early works that may claim in some way to be histories of world music. A few scholars, however, devoted themselves substantially to the notion that there is a world history of music in which Western music plays an important role.
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Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2013

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