“Music is the social act of communication among people, a gesture of friendship, the strongest there is.”

Malcolm Arnold

Music is a human activity that functions within its social and cultural contexts. It has never been an autonomous art form divorced from social, political, economic, technological, and ethical developments. Instead, music in society and culture touches on an extensive range of human endeavors. It may accompany every human activity from the cradle to the grave and include lullabies, games, dancing, working, healing, battling, ceremonies, festivals, weddings and funerals. Music in and as culture suggest not only how people use, perform, compose and think about music and their general attitudes towards it, but also how it functions as emotional expression, aesthetic enjoyment, or as entertainment. In this section you find articles that look at music from a variety of interdisciplinary and current viewpoints. We explore music influence, the value of music, and music of life through the lens of folklore, cultural anthropology, performance studies, dance, area studies, cultural studies, gender studies, race or ethnic studies, or other fields in the humanities and social sciences. Music plays an important role in shaping society and identities, and it provides parameters that can be used to frame experiences, perceptions, feelings, and comportments. For better or worse, music has become a commodity and significantly changed our experience and social practices.

242 Posts
  • Music 101 – A Foray into Understanding Classical Music Music 101 – A Foray into Understanding Classical Music
    I’ve been a professional classical musician for more decades than I care to disclose. By far the most common comment I’ve heard (other than, “Why, that cello is bigger than you are!) is— “I don’t know anything about classical music.
  • Turtle Song Turtle Song
    I spend most of my time at Cambridge involved in activities that are almost entirely self-serving. I work towards a degree; I engage in musical projects to practice conducting; I seek work either to earn money or to gain valuable
  • Bronislaw Huberman and the formation of the Israeli Philharmonic Bronislaw Huberman and the formation of the Israeli Philharmonic
    The legendary violinist and peace activist Bronislaw Huberman was born in Poland December 19, 1882 of Jewish parents. His prodigious talent was manifest at a very early age and it soon became evident that he needed the best teacher in
  • The Power of Music The Power of Music
    Music has power. Preceding both spoken and written language, the music of every culture reflects their indigenous spirits. Music travelled with the many people who have been displaced and through music they were able to keep their cultures alive. Music
  • Breaking boundaries – Nadia Boulanger Breaking boundaries – Nadia Boulanger
    In Woody Allen’s movie, ‘Midnight in Paris’, Gil Pender (Owen Wilson) travelled back to Paris in the 1920s and encountered Ernest Hemingway, Salvador Dali, Pablo Picasso, Zelda and F. Scott Fitzgerald etc. If I had a chance, I would have