Last update: David Verbuč, M.A., Ph.D. (18.09.2018)
Cultural History of Rock Music class offers students an opportunity to learn how rock music developed and changed through the last six decades of its existence, and at the same time, to understand rock music in relation to its social and historical contexts. In the class, we look into the origins of rock, its different styles and substyles, and related music cultures. We briefly examine pre-rock music genres that influenced it (from early gospel, blues, and rhythm and blues, to country music), and proceed with the emergence of rock’n’roll in the 1950s, and with 1960s rock music and related styles, including folk-rock, garage rock, psychedelic rock, jazz-rock, soul, and funk. Furthermore, we follow the development of later rock styles such as heavy metal, punk, new wave, industrial, grunge, indie rock, and post-rock, and trace rock’s connections to pop, disco, hip-hop, electronic dance music, and Latin American, Jamaican, African, Asian, and European musics. At the same time, we also study rock music as manifested outside of Anglo-American geographic areas, especially in Latin America, Jamaica, Eastern and Central Europe (before 1989), Germany, and Scandinavia. In our class discussions, we analyze music styles, songs and videos, and interrogate their relatedness to issues of race, class, gender, sexuality, ethnicity, and nationality, and see how media, technology, identity, and politics shape rock music and rock culture. No preliminary requirements.