Themes in Western Music History and Historiography: 1600-1800
This course surveys the music and musical institutions of Europe during the Baroque and Enlightenment eras. Two hundred years of musical developments, needless to say, cannot be adequately covered in ten weeks; the course thus aims to build literacy in music from these periods by contextualizing musical works and their creators against broader themes, including music in the European courts, music and religion, words and music, music and gender, music and Enlightenment ideals, and the rise of instrumental music. At the same time, we will interrogate the central historical narratives of Western music that we have inherited and grapple with how historiography - the writing of history - shapes the way we understand the musical past and present.
The online version of the Caltech Catalog is provided as a convenience; however, the printed version is the only authoritative source of information about course offerings, option requirements, graduation requirements, and other important topics.