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Popular Music and Populism

Posted: August 26th, 2020 | Filed under: Calls for Papers | No Comments »

Special issue of Popular Music (41:4) on Popular Music and Populism (2022)


Populism has been researched from a great array of disciplines in the humanities and social sciences over the last decades. In musicology and popular music studies, however, the concept has been relatively neglected so far. This is all the more surprising since populism and music have been intricately connected at least since the nineteenth-century populist movement in the U.S. (Patch 2016; Kazin 2017), and popular music studies have a long tradition of research into music and politics (Street 2017; Garratt 2019), subcultures and counter-cultural movements that challenge the hegemonic ‘power bloc’ (Clarke et. al. 1975; Hebdige 1979; Eyerman and Jamison 1995). This special issue, therefore, seeks to explore the nexus between popular music and populism.

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‘People Have the Power’: Songs of Resistance in Late Modernity

Posted: August 26th, 2020 | Filed under: Calls for Papers | No Comments »

CITIES, Communities and Territories Special Issue 2021.

Guest Editors: Paula Guerra, University of Porto, Portugal; Elizabeth Turner, Auckland University of Technology, New Zealand; Carles Feixa, Pompeu Fabra University, Barcelona, Spain

The aim of this special issue is to examine the unique force of popular music in response to recent and contemporary social problems, and the changing concepts of resistance and protest in popular music. Taking as an example the Portuguese reality in a context of crisis, when the International Monetary Fund intervened in the country, Guerra (2019) illustrates the importance of such reflection and discussion. The author shows how artistic manifestations – in this case, music and protest songs – are themselves a means and an object of social intervention, demarcating a specific, defined space in the acknowledgement and revelation of social problems, and in the contestation, deconstruction and accusation of problems that deal with social reality. Protest songs instigate readings, narratives and deconstructions of reality, and they are simultaneously significant elements of a collective identity.

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Prosecuting and Policing Rap 

Posted: August 3rd, 2020 | Filed under: Calls for Papers | No Comments »

Special issue of Popular Music 40.4 (2021)  

Contributions are invited to a special issue of Popular Music on the complex interface between rap music (taken in its broadest sense to include mainstream rap, gangsta rap, activist rap, drill, grime, etc.) and criminal justice systems around the world.

Rap music is an international youth-cultural powerhouse and, while its spread has been celebrated, it has also been attended by mounting criminalisation. This special issue asks researchers to explore the policing and prosecuting of rap and how this has been framed in media reporting. It also considers what might make rap susceptible to such state criminalisation and how rappers, communities, civil liberties groups, defence lawyers, and scholars have come to challenge ‘prosecuting rap’.

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Musical Regions and Regionalisms in the USA

Posted: August 1st, 2020 | Filed under: Calls for Papers | No Comments »

Song and Popular Culture of the Center for Popular Culture and Music, Vol. 66 (2021), ed. by Julius Greve and Knut Holtsträter

Samuel A. Ward and Katherine Lee Bates’ America the Beautiful summons the Arcadian beauty of the natural and cultural landscape of the USA and the unity of the states from coast to coast is conjured up as fatefully harmonious; a “brotherhood from sea to shining sea”. This basic idea of the American Dream, enveloping both the diversity of regional cultures and the unity of national culture, is expressed in many rural and urban musical cultures throughout the United States. From its inception as a nation, the USA has always been musically constructed as a network of regions that are separated from and related to each other, but at the same time may contribute to a greater whole, a higher cause – E pluribus unum. While the belief in the integrative power of this unity-in-diversity proved to be both meaningful and problematic, this idea seems to be finally crumbling at the beginning of the third decade of the 21st century. The focus of this volume will be on these aspects – not only with regard to the current crisis-ridden situation of US-American society, but also in terms of earlier historical developments of the USA. The yearbook volume for 2021 seeks to shed light on the wide field of musical regions and regionalisms in the USA and asks for corresponding contributions.

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