Subject Area: Australian Studies
This course examines both traditional and contemporary Australian Aboriginal music and its associated practices of dance and ceremony. This course begins with an overview and working definition of Australian Aboriginal music. It then investigates definitions of culture and the methodological paradigms of Ethnomusicology, the study of music as culture. Students then examine traditional Aboriginal music in several regions and contemporary music made by Aboriginal Australians. European musical responses to Australian Aboriginal music are critically examined, both as musical works and as instances of appropriation, representation and engagement. The course makes extensive use of archival and contemporary sound recordings, as well ethnographic and other documentary film. Students engage directly with Aboriginal music through guided listening and learning to sing open or public songs.