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MUSIC 1MH3 Music History I: Music&Culture (C01)

Academic Year: Winter 2019

Term: Winter

Day/Evening: D

Instructor: Dr. Andrew Mitchell


Office: Togo Salmon Hall 433

Phone: 905-525-9140 x 24217

Office Hours: by appointment

Course Objectives:

In this course we will examine and reflect on the various ways that music interacts with the culture in which it is produced.  Such reflection is important for a rich understanding of music made in the present and music made in the past, and so it is an important precursor to other courses you will take, including those in music history, but in other fields as well.  Examples for study will be drawn from various musical styles, locations and historical periods.  Students will engage in some research about music and the broader context in which it is created, whether it be composed, improvised or performed).

The required textbooks Music: A Social Experience and Music and Culture will not play the role of authoritative sources, but will be examined for the underlying questions motivating their writers and will be used as springboards for our own questions.

Traditional lecturing will only be one teaching technique employed in this course.   Classroom activities, especially discussion in small groups and among the entire class, will also be crucial.  Students are encouraged to take this learning approach seriously for the benefits it will provide.

Prerequisite: Registration in a Music program.

By the end of this course, students should have

  • increased their sensitivity to the multiplicity of ways in which music and broader culture interact
  • become familiar with musical repertoire of a broad array of types
  • developed their ability to ask a variety of questions about the ways in which music and culture interact
  • fine-tuned one particularly meaningful research question on a topic of interest to them
  • engaged in intensive research on their research questions
  • become familiar with established bibliographic techniques

Textbooks, Materials & Fees:

Natvig, Mary and Cornelius, Steven.  Music: A Social Experience.  New York: Routledge, 2016.

Tomasino, Anna.  Music and Culture.  New York:  Pearson, 2004.


Method of Assessment:

Small Quizzes


Class Participation


Midterm Test


Essay Progress Assignments (2)




Final Exam


N.B. Students will have received at least 20% of the their final grade by March 15, 2019.


Policy on Missed Work, Extensions, and Late Penalties:

Attendance: Full attendance at all scheduled classes is expected.  The percentage of classes missed will be deducted from the Class Participation grade.  Students are responsible for any material (including class notes) missed because of absence. Notes in this class will not be provided by the instructor.

Dates: Students are required to write tests and submit assignments on the dates indicated. Late assignments will be deducted 5% per class-day late (assignments must be submitted during class-time to the instructor or they will be considered late).  Alternate test dates and assignment due dates for individual students will only be considered in exceptional circumstances. In such cases, appropriate documentation may be required, and if it is not provided, students risk forfeiting the mark for the course requirement.  An alternate date for the final exam will not be considered for any reason by the instructor.  Applications for deferred exams must be made directly to the examinations office.

Reading Quizzes:  Short multiple-choice quizzes will be given on the dates that readings from other sources than Music: A Social Experience (Natvig) are assigned.  Each student’s lowest quiz mark will be removed from the final calculation at the end of the year.  These can only be written on the appointed day and the appointed time (all quizzes will be written at the beginning of class).  If a student is missing because of an approved absence (documented as indicated above), the student will be given the option of submitting their reflections on the reading (1-2 pages double spaced).  Reflections are due one class after the quiz and will not be accepted after that date.

Please Note the Following Policies and Statements:

Academic Dishonesty

You are expected to exhibit honesty and use ethical behaviour in all aspects of the learning process. Academic credentials you earn are rooted in principles of honesty and academic integrity.

Academic dishonesty is to knowingly act or fail to act in a way that results or could result in unearned academic credit or advantage. This behaviour can result in serious consequences, e.g. the grade of zero on an assignment, loss of credit with a notation on the transcript (notation reads: "Grade of F assigned for academic dishonesty"), and/or suspension or expulsion from the university.

It is your responsibility to understand what constitutes academic dishonesty. For information on the various types of academic dishonesty please refer to the Academic Integrity Policy, located at

The following illustrates only three forms of academic dishonesty:

  1. Plagiarism, e.g. the submission of work that is not one’s own or for which other credit has been obtained.
  2. Improper collaboration in group work.
  3. Copying or using unauthorized aids in tests and examinations.

Email correspondence policy

It is the policy of the Faculty of Humanities that all email communication sent from students to instructors (including TAs), and from students to staff, must originate from each student’s own McMaster University email account. This policy protects confidentiality and confirms the identity of the student.  Instructors will delete emails that do not originate from a McMaster email account.

Modification of course outlines

The University reserves the right to change dates and/or deadlines etc. for any or all courses in the case of an emergency situation or labour disruption or civil unrest/disobedience, etc. If a modification becomes necessary, reasonable notice and communication with the students will be given with an explanation and the opportunity to comment on changes. Any significant changes should be made in consultation with the Department Chair.

McMaster Student Absence Form (MSAF)

In the event of an absence for medical or other reasons, students should review and follow the Academic Regulation in the Undergraduate Calendar Requests for Relief for Missed Academic Term Work. Please note these regulations have changed beginning Fall 2015. You can find information at If you have any questions about the MSAF, please contact your Associate Dean's office.

Academic Accommodation of Students with Disabilities

Students who require academic accommodation must contact Student Accessibility Services (SAS) to make arrangements with a Program Coordinator. Academic accommodations must be arranged for each term of study. Student Accessibility Services can be contacted by phone 905-525-9140 ext. 28652 or e-mail For further information, consult McMaster University's Policy for Academic Accommodation of Students with Disabilities.

Academic Accommodation for Religious, Indigenous and Spiritual Observances

Students requiring academic accommodation based on religion and spiritual observances should follow the procedures set out in the Course Calendar or by their respective Faculty. In most cases, the student should contact his or her professor or academic advisor as soon as possible to arrange accommodations for classes, assignments, tests and examinations that might be affected by a religious holiday or spiritual observance.

Topics and Readings:



Readings or Other Preparation

Listening Examples


Week 1

Jan 8





Jan 10




Jan 11




Week 2

Jan 15





Jan 17





Jan 18





Week 3

Jan 22

Music and Ethnicity

Chapter 4 Natvig; pp. 33-40, 45-49

“Kelefaba” and “Kuruntu Kelafa;”

“Sweet Little Angel;”

“Allegro Barbaro”


Jan 24





Jan 25



Week 4

Jan 29

Music and Gender

Chapter 5 Natvig; pp. 54-60, 59-72


“Mekar Sari;”

“Non so più"


Jan 31




DUE: Assignment 1: Choosing a Topic

Feb 1


Music and Culture: “Madonna I,” (88ff) and “Glam and Glitter Rock” (104ff)



Week 5

Feb 5

Music and Spirituality

Chapter 6 Natvig: 76-81, 87-90

“Amazing Grace” (3 versions)

“Kyrie” from Pope Marcellus Mass

“Naat-I Sherif, Taksim and Peșrev”


Feb 7




Feb 8



Week 6

Feb 12

Music and Politics

Chapter 7 Natvig: 96-106, 114-116

In the Steppes of Central Asia

“My Heart is Burning with Anger”

“El Himno Zapatista”


Feb 13





Feb 14


Music and Culture: “Music” (35ff.)


Midterm Test






Week 7

Feb 26

Music and Violence

Chapter 8 Natvig: 118, 122-125, 128-130, 135-136

“Ballad of the Green Berets”

“Es iz geven a zumer-tog”

Threnody for the Victims of Hiroshima


Feb 28




DUE: Assignment 2: Annotated Bibliography

Mar 1


Music and Culture:

“Children, Violence and the Media” (62ff.)



Week 8

Mar 5

Music and Lovc

Chapter 9 Natvig; 139-141, 146-148, 151-155

“Un bel dì, vedremo”

“Ceurik rahwana”

“La Vie en Rose”


Mar 7





Mar 8



Week 9

Mar 12

Music and Drama

Chapter 10, 11 Natvig;

157, 159-165, 167-170, 174-176

Showboat Opening Scene

Final to Act 1, West Side Story

E.T., Flying Scene


Mar 14




Mar 15



Week 10

Mar 17

Music and Dance

Chapter 12 Natvig;

191-193, 196-200, 201-203



“Branle des Lavadiers”

“The Augurs of Spring”


Mar 19





Mar 20


Music and Culture: “Dancing our Way out of Class” (107ff.)



Week 11

Mar 24

Music and Concert

Chapter 13 Natvig; 207-214


First movement from “Spring”

First movement from Symphony in G minor


Mar 26





Mar 27


Music and Culture: “Pop Music: Authenticity, Creativity and Technology” (202ff.)



Week 12

Mar 31

Music and Business

Chapter 13 Natvig;


Last movement from String Quartet in E-flat major

Caprice in A minor

“Manasu Visaya”

“So what”

Final Essay Due

Apr 2





Apr 3


Music and Culture: “Madison Ave. woos Musicians” (164ff.)



Week 13

Apr 9










Other Course Information:  In this course we will be using a web-based service ( to reveal plagiarism. Students will be required to submit their work electronically to and in hard copy so that it can be checked for academic dishonesty.  Students who do not wish to submit their work to must still submit a copy to the instructor. No penalty will be assigned to a student who does not submit work to All submitted work is subject to normal verification that standards of academic integrity have been upheld (e.g., on-line search, etc.). To see the Policy, please go to