Topics in Music History and Culture II - Music and Musical Life in Eighteenth-Century London

Course Number: 381*/3.0 3L, S (Course Code Explanation)

Open To: B.Mus. and B.Mus./B.Ed. students, non-B.Mus. students

Area(s): Musicology/Ethnomusicology

Instructor(s): Dr. Clara Marvin

Term(s): B

Day(s) and Time(s): M: 1.00-2.30, W: 11.30-1.00

Room: HLH 213

Calendar Description

An intensive study of a topic within historical musicology, ethnomusicology, or popular music(s).

Prerequisite(s) / Corequisite(s) / Exclusion(s)

  • MUSC 191; MUSC 103* plus any one of MUSC203*, MUSC 204* or MUSC 205* , or permission of the School.

Additional Information


This course explores the relationship of musical genres to cultural context in one of the most vibrant periods in English history--the period spanning roughly from the era of  Henry Purcell to Joseph Haydn’s London sojourns (1680-1795). London in this period was both the hub of English musical life and tradition, and a centre that increasingly attracted performers and composers from all over Europe. This interaction effectively shaped a musical culture and style that was at once English and ‘international’. Course participants will examine the evolution of major genres of English church, chamber, theatrical and ‘occasional’ musics in this period. These genres will be studied in the context of a syllabus of social, economic and (contemporary) aesthetic writings that offer insight on the history of English cultural taste, and that also illuminate the conditions that led to London becoming an international urban magnet. Coursework will include regular readings, mandatory participation in in-class discussion periods related to these readings, listening and analysis of representative musical works, two in-class presentation/projects (one individual, one part of a group, depending on the size of the class), and a research paper of at least 2000 words on an approved topic.