The musicology in action fieldwork and ethnography

This is an assignment that focuses on the musicology in action fieldwork and ethnography. The assignment writing to be the book shadows in the field.

The musicology in action fieldwork and ethnography

MUSC60032 Ethno/Musicology in Action: Fieldwork and also Ethnography Coursework Essay Questions

Your assessment consists of two coursework essays of 3,000 words each (including footnotes but excluding bibliography). Each essay counts for 50% of your overall mark for the module. Your essays should be submitted via the Turnitin tool on Blackboard. The question as worded below should appear on the first page of your essay, together with a note of the word count.
Choose TWO questions

1. EITHER: a) Shadows in the Field (first edition, 1997) presents itself as ‘the first book to consider fieldwork as an issue-laden practice, rather than as a methodology requiring a prescriptive manual’, while one of the book’s contributors, Nicole Beaudry, refers to her realisation that ‘human relationships rather than methodology determined the quantity and quality of the information gathered’. Why have ‘issues’ and also ‘human relationships’ displaced earlier conceptions of ‘methodology’ in this way? Might we envisage a type of fieldwork that is equally informed by all three?
OR: b) How are issues of research ethics implicated in ethnomusicological research?

2. Secondly, how have ideas about field recordings and also sound archives, and the uses to which they have been put, changed as ethnomusicology has developed? What is the role of field recordings and sound archives in the twenty-first century?

The musicology in action fieldwork and ethnography

3. EITHER: a) To what extent is transcription a useful research method for ethno/musicology?
OR: b) Transcribe some music of your choice and write an essay, discussing your transcription. The essay should explain your approach to transcription and also discuss what the transcription reveals. You should refer to relevant secondary literature.

4. Do some ethnographic research on a music scene of your choice. Write a critical, reflective account of your experiences. You should report on what the ethnography revealed and also on the process of doing ethnography itself. Your answer should also refer to relevant secondary literature on ethnography and/or on ethnographic research in ethnomusicology.

5. EITHER: a) In his ‘Afterword’ to The Cambridge History of World Music, Martin Stokes writes: ‘Ethnography could easily revert to a kind of “reporting back” from the colonial peripheries. Ethnography in ethnomusicology is not a matter of providing raw data for theory. It is theory.’ To what extent do you agree with this assessment and with the sentiments, or rationale, behind it? You may, if you wish, also consider the part played by ‘theory’ in one or more of the ethnographies you have studied.
OR: b) Compare and contrast either two ethnomusicological monographs or an ethnographic monograph and film of your choice, including reference to subject matter, structure, ethnographic stance and writing/presentation style, and with reference to secondary literature where relevant.

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