MUS 120
Musics of Africa Fall 2023
Division I
Cross-listed AFR 113
This is not the current course catalog

Class Details

This course introduces musical traditions spanning the geographical breadth of continental Africa. We will prioritize hands-on experience and musical practice, critical listening, and deep social and political contextualization as strategies of musical engagement. Following an introductory exploration of overarching aesthetic and social trends in African musical practice, the course will then focus on 3-4 geographically rooted case studies, allowing us to discuss how different musical practices and subcultures (featuring traditional, contemporary, and popular forms) interrelate in a musical soundscape. The geographical focus of the case studies may vary but previous case studies have included: Ghana, Zimbabwe, Ethiopia, Egypt, Mali and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
The Class: Format: lecture; discussion
Limit: 20
Expected: 12
Class#: 1063
Grading: yes pass/fail option, yes fifth course option
Requirements/Evaluation: grade based on attendance and participation, one synthesizing assignment at the end of each unit (for instance a 5-7 pg. paper, a podcast or performance-oriented assignment, an album review or curated listening list) and an 8-10pg final paper.
Prerequisites: no prerequisites: prior musical background is not essential for this class
Enrollment Preferences: current or prospective majors in Music and Africana Studies, seniors.
Distributions: Division I
Notes: This course is cross-listed and the prefixes carry the following divisional credit:
MUS 120 Division I AFR 113 Division II
Attributes: GBST African Studies
MUS World Music/Ethnomusicology

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