Historiography of music

A.Y. 2019/2020
Overall hours
Learning objectives
Through studies of relevant literature and case studies, the course provides an introduction to central characteristics regarding the musical historiography as a theoretical field, with particular emphasis on reflexivity.
The course aims to enable students to relate their musicological knowledge with a historical understanding of musical phenomena. The ability to read and interpret musical objects and practices in a historiographical perspective and under a cultural angle is the main learning scope of the course.
Expected learning outcomes
By the end of the course, students will have understood that music is not a phenomenon of nature, and this historical awareness will enable them to place the musical examples considered within its specific cultural context, with reference to the monographic subject explored each new academic year.
Course syllabus and organization

Single session

Lesson period
First semester
Course syllabus
Title of the monographic course (a.a. 2019-2020): Cultural Trauma and Music Historiography.

After an introduction of the history and theory of music historiography (Unit A), the monographic course will focus on the Jeffrey Alexander's theory of cultural trauma in a musicological perspective applied to a couple of case studies (Unit B).
Prerequisites for admission
A good knowledge of "classical" music and/or others non-Western music traditions are important prerequisites of the course as well as an appropriate knowledge of the basic elements of musical grammar and music theory.
Teaching methods
The course is structured through class lectures and will draw on the Ariel platform for sharing materials and teaching aids.
Teaching Resources
The class will be supported by the reading materials and other digital contents, which will be uploaded to the course's website on the Ariel platform (https://ariel.unimi.it/). The materials and digital contents are intended for study only. They are an integral part of the program, together with the bibliography of the course.

Unit A
- Carl Dahlhaus, Grundlagen der Musikgeschichte (1977), It. trans. Fondamenti di storiografia musicale, Fiesole, Discanto, 1980, pp. 1-52 (Perdita della storia? [Chapter 1], Storicità e carattere artistico [Chapter 2], Che cosa è un fatto nella storia della musica? [Chapter 3]) + pp. 206-207 (Notes).
- Jean-Jacques Nattiez, Alcuni concetti fondamentali di storiografia della musica: periodizzazione, "spirito del tempo", successione di generazioni, in Rivista di analisi e teoria musicale, 1, 2007, pp. 7-35.
- Leo Treitler, Toward a Desegregated Music Historiography, in Black Music Research Journal, XVI/1, 1996, pp. 3-10.
- Jeffrey C. Alexander, Trauma. A Social Theory (2012), It. Trans. Trauma. La rappresentazione sociale del dolore, Milano, Meltemi, 2018, pp. 27-71 (Introduzione e primo capitolo intitolato "Una teoria sociale del trauma culturale").
- Maria Cizmic, Performing Pain: Music and Trauma in Eastern Europe, Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2012, pp. 3-29 ("Introduction").

Unit B
[For the first case study]
- Lydia Goehr, The Imaginary Museum of Musical Works (20072), It. trans. Il museo immaginario delle opere musicali, Milano, Mimesis, 2016, pp. 27-75 ("Saggio introduttivo" e "Introduzione").
- Richard Taruskin, Text and Act. Music and Performance, New York-Oxford, Oxford University Press, 1995 pp. 3-47 ("Introduction").
- Emilio Sala, L'Istituto nazionale di studi verdiani e la preistoria dell'edizione critica delle opere di Giuseppe Verdi, in Le note del ricordo, edited byi Emilio Sala, Padova, Nova Charta, 2015, pp. 61-71.
[For the second case study]
- Marco Santoro, Effetto Tenco. Genealogia della canzone d'autore, Bologna, il Mulino, 2010.

"Non-attending" students must integrate the program with these additional texts:

Unit A
- Chose and prepare three chapters of the following book: The Cultural Study of Music, edited by Martin Clayton et al., New York, Routledge, 2003.

Unit B
- Jacopo Tomatis, Storia culturale della canzone italiana, Milano, il Saggiatore, 2019, pp. 329-380 ("L'invenzione della canzone d'autore").
- Marco Beghelli, Alla ricerca della "voce adatta". Toscanini e i solisti di canto, in Arturo Toscanini. Il direttore e l'artista mediatico, edited by Marco Capra e Ivano Cavallini, Lucca, LIM, 2011, pp. 133-169.
Assessment methods and Criteria
The students will have to write a paper (approximately 5.000 words in length) on a topic approved by the professor in advance. The assessment criteria for papers will be: 1. Pertinence of the topics under discussion during the course; 2. Originality of the chosen topic/approach; 3. Analytical competence and interpretive depth; 4. Formal quality of writing (terminological appropriateness, coherence, accuracy of the critical apparatus). The paper must be submitted with a minimum 7-day advance on the date selected for the exam. The oral examination will consist in a discussion of the program's materials, based on the lecturer's feedback on the paper submitted.
Unita' didattica
L-ART/07 - MUSICOLOGY AND HISTORY OF MUSIC - University credits: 3
Lessons: 20 hours
Unita' didattica
L-ART/07 - MUSICOLOGY AND HISTORY OF MUSIC - University credits: 3
Lessons: 20 hours