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  • World Culture Through Music

One of the unique elements of the RWU Music Major is our focus on World Music. Looking at the music of Latin America, North America, Asia, and the Middle East through the filter of culture places it in a context that facilitates understanding. Two of these courses are part of the Music Foundation requirements, a third course is required for the "Music & Culture" track, and additional courses can be taken as electives.

MUSIC 310 – Music in the USA
Prerequisite: Music 161 or consent of the instructor
A look at America’s musical melting pot from colonial times to the present, and the development of significant North American music styles, including ragtime, gospel, jazz, musical theater, country music, blues, rock, and classical. Examines questions of how and why America’s music developed, its international roots, and what constitutes American style. One of the “World Culture Through Music” courses. (3 credits) Alternate Years

MUSIC 311 – Music of Latin America & the Caribbean
Prerequisite: Music 161 or consent of the instructor
This course presents an overview of Latin American music, with particular focus on Brazil, Cuba, Jamaica, Argentina, the Andes, and Mexico. Popular music styles of the 19th and 20th centuries, and national rock styles post-1970 will be presented. Investigates the musical elements of Latin American music and how they reflect Latino culture. One of the “World Culture Through Music” courses. (3 credits) Alternate Years

MUSIC 312 – Music of China & Japan
Explores the history and cultures of China & Japan with a primary focus on the place of music in society. Areas of focus will include art music as well as the function of music within various religious traditions. Activities will include a great deal of listening as well as elements of research. One of the “World Culture Through Music” courses. (3 credits) Alternate Years

MUSIC 313 – Music of India and the Middle East
Explores the history and cultures of India and the Middle East with a primary focus on the place of music in society. Areas of focus will include art music as well as the function of music within various religious traditions. Activities will include a great deal of listening as well as elements of research. One of the “World Culture Through Music” courses. (3 credits) Alternate Years

MUSIC 314 – Music of Indigenous Peoples
Explores the place of music in various indigenous cultures around the world. These may include Sub- Saharan African, Native American, Australian Aboriginal, Ainu, Inuit, Romani, and/or other cultures. Units focus on specific peoples and practices chosen to explore the various functions of music in society: spiritual, ceremonial, storytelling, dance, entertainment, and more. Activities will include a great deal of listening as well as elements of research. One of the “World Culture Through Music” courses. (3 credits) Alternate years