ACRES, Samuel George

PhD University of Tasmania 2014 Pages: 221

Toward an Ontology of Pop music

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To arrive at an ontology of pop music this project considers what is constant as regards the concern of works, not merely sound or composition. This being the case, individual works are apprehended prior to their being absorbed into a socio-cultural/historical context, such that the in-itself of the work is the domain of this project, which by way of the works being autographic, speaks to a singularness and deliberateness in their construction. This aspect of autography is reflected in the method used to analyse such works, and in doing so leaves to history and sociology the historical and sociological, which is a departure from conventional modes of analysis. The originality of this project lies firstly in its aim and secondly in the method used to achieve that aim. It seems that a disproportionate amount of popular music analysis—by ignoring for example Backstreet Boys or Boy George—suggests implicitly that pop music is either unpopular, or unworthy of an academic exploration. It is this paradoxical oversight, or unwillingness to engage with pop music—perhaps by way of a high/low split within popular music studies itself—that renders this study of pop music original.

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