Local as national: Alan Lomax's nationalist pedagogy of the folk Public Deposited

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  • March 20, 2019
  • Haas, Benjamin D.
    • Affiliation: College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Music
  • Though ascribed a prominent place in narratives of the American folk movement, a comprehensive model for Alan Lomax's work as a folk music collector and promoter during the 1930s and 1940s has yet to emerge. Melding historical models of folk scholarship with his own innovations, Lomax developed a conception of folksong in fundamental tension with itself, one which emphasized the unique contributions of individual folk artists even while positing folk music as a unified artistic language of national origin. Inspired by a Popular Front populism that championed the role of art in left-leaning causes, Lomax maximized the political potential of this inherent tension between national and local, employing folk song as the crux of a nationalist pedagogy designed to supplant the decadence and disaffection of American mass culture with the grassroots (and thereby democratic) language of folk song.
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  • In Copyright
  • "... in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Arts in the Department of Music."
  • Cohen, Brigid Maureen
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  • Chapel Hill, NC
  • Open access

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