Essay on The Effects Of Music On Western Culture

Essay on The Effects Of Music On Western Culture

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Many musicological studies that have made available to us in recent years seem to suggest that music is inherently tied to the Western culture. A case in point is the account presented by several historians of country music suggesting that this particular genre of music has its social origins in the early 20th-century Southern United States, and that New Orleans is the center of many African American musical styles (Manuel 417). Although these accounts may be valid, it may be misleading to hold the perspective that music is inescapably tied to the Western culture and its assumptions. If we take a closer look at all the societies and cultures known to us and evaluate all the historical societies to the level that we can possibly discern, we can construe with a high degree of assurance that music is all pervasive and cuts across all societies irrespective of place or location in life.
First, it is wrong to assume that music is tied to Western culture when we all know that it cuts across cultural boundaries and geographical locations. Let us take the example of pop music. Although this genre of music has its roots in the Western world, available evidence shows that it has effortlessly transcended global boundaries and linguistic barriers to influence people thousands of miles away from the Western hemisphere. People in Africa and other far-flung countries are today, more than ever before, showing more love for pop music than those from the epicenter because music is voluntary and self willed (Garfias 1). The question, therefore, becomes that of pervasiveness rather than viewing music using a narrow lens of Western civilization. Being one of the marvelous complexities of forms of expression, music has pervaded all society to achieve ...


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... paper has taken the position that music is all pervasive and cuts across all societies irrespective of place or location in life. By taking this position, the paper has rejected the notion that the term ‘music’ is inescapably tied to Western culture and its assumptions. Various reasons have been given to back up the claim, with the most important being the fact that music cuts across cultural boundaries and geographical locations. Another reason that is worth mentioning revolves around the fact that music spread across the world even before the Western world colonized Africa and other places. Overall, therefore, there is no substantial evidence that can be used to associate music with Western civilization. Although further research may be needed to validate the claims made in this paper, it is evident that a linkage between music and Western culture does not exist.

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