Themes in Western Music History and Historiography: 1800-Present
This course surveys the music and musical institutions of the so-called "Western art music" tradition from the Romantic era until the present. Over 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 of this period by contextualizing musical works and their creators against broader themes, including music and the nation, music as art and philosophy, music and appropriation, music and genre, and the musical canon. 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.