2015 - 2016

  The Voice of America                                                                                 
Yoav FromerWebb - School of Languages103Tue1400-1600 Sem  1
University credit hours:  2.0

Course description
Voice of America                                                                                                                          Dr Yoav Fromer
Advanced course
This course seeks to understand modern American history through the advent and spread of popular music. It uses music as a vehicle with which to explore significant political, economic and cultural developments in America since the 1920’s (when recorded music became institutionalized and widely available). Offering a diverse cultural history, the course proceeds chronologically and employs a variety of influential songs/albums/performances with popular appeal (ranging from Bing Crosby and Paul Robeson all the way to Nina Simone, Bruce Springsteen and Nirvana) in order to excavate them for deeper meaning, examine the historical contexts in which they were created, and investigate what it is they really teach us about modern America. For example: what does Pete Seeger’s folk music in the thirties reveal about the Popular Front and the experience of the Depression? Or how does Woodstock further our understanding of the opposition to the Vietnam War and the counterculture in the sixties? The course balances interesting readings - with a lot of great listening!
Course requirements include a take-home midterm and a (short) final paper

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