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Masters Degrees (Music)

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    The exploration of the dynamics of the South African Indie music scene through an auto- ethnographic account of the making and marketing of my debut album, Becoming.
    (2022) Mapisa, Tsholofelo Relebogile.; Olsen, Kathryn Rita.
    This study of the independent music scene in South Africa is motivated by my own experiences of composing, recording, and independently marketing my debut album, Becoming. While my journey to becoming a musician required a long-term commitment to the development of musical skills, I found that once I had reached the point of recording my first album, I was poorly versed in marketing skills and knowledge of how to engage effectively with the Indie music scene in South Africa. This study is thus inspired by my own experience (hence the autoethnographic methodology) and the need to understand this particular social network, mechanism, and way of being in the world that is called the South African Indie music scene. The methodologies used for this research include: Autoethnography, Ethnography, and Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis otherwise known as IPA, which I used when working with four musicians and music business practitioners who exert some influence in independent music in South Africa and who have achieved a measure of success. Their journeys provide a context for my own experiences and foreground the issues that independent artists may confront. The aim of this research is not to find fixed answers to the dilemmas that remain prevalent in the South African Indie music market, but rather, to dissect, discuss, and explore what may happen when pursuing an independent music career. Through this research, I discovered that many of the tensions between art and commerce pertain to how we think and dichotomise the two. My findings therefore propose a merging of the two – what I present as ‘entrepreneurial artists’ in Chapter Four, to alleviate some of the tensions one may face. Through a detailed analysis of my own choices, the choices of my case studies, and the consequences of these choices, I have sought to clarify the operation of this particular aspect of the South African Music industry.
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    Stakeholders’ perceptions of the role of gospel music in Botswana.
    (2022) Daman, Pogiso Abel.; Bethke, Andrew-John.
    Gospel music can play an important role in the spiritual lives of individual church members and, consequently, the spiritual and numerical growth of the church as a whole. The aim of this study was to investigate stakeholders’ perceptions about the role of gospel music in the Botswana Pentecostal church, where the stakeholders are pastors, church musicians and congregation members. The study was partly motivated by the fact that there is a gap in academic literature regarding gospel music in the Botswana context in general, or peoples’ perceptions of its importance more specifically. The data collection instrument was limited to a interviews because of constraints related to the Covid-19 Virus protocols that had to be observed, such as social distancing and uncertainties of nature and length of lock-downs. The sample size of the study comprised three strata, namely 3 pastors, 6 musicians and 12 congregation members (21 in total). The choice of the three strata was done purposively, that is, purposive sampling strategy was employed. This was based on the assumption that the three groups were conversant with the importance of gospel music and would therefore give relevant information needed to address the research questions. In this study, probability sampling in the form of simple random sampling was used to select the 21 individual research participants. The theoretical framework in this study adopted Pass’ theory that church music satisfies three separate theological functions within any act of worship, namely, kerygmatic; koinoniac; and leitourgic (Greek theological terms). Kerygma refers to imparting the gospel; koinonia to the community of the faithful; and leitourgia to the structure of church services and how ordinary people actively participate in them (Pass, 1989:91-119). The findings of the study show that in general, the purpose of gospel music is to spread the gospel. Many interviewees perceived gospel music as more effective in this mission than preaching. Additionally, because gospel music in the church is presented in different languages and members can socialise freely while rehearsing it is a sign that it has the potential to build church community. Finally, gospel music is an integral component of the structure of normal church services, particularly when praise-and-worship songs are played in between the items of the service to fill-in the liturgical “gaps”. Thus, the findings of this study support the thesis that gospel music has a positive impact on the spiritual development and growth of the church.
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    A Seventh-day Adventist perspective on secular pop music: an exploratory study of engagement and compatibility.
    (2022) Cecil, Michelle.; Bethke, Andrew-John.
    It is a common practice for people to have pop music playing in the background while they go about daily living. Many Seventh-day Adventists seem to engage with pop music in this manner. The aim of this study was to understand the type of principles, attitudes and behaviours that were being promoted by commonly heard pop songs, and how these fare against the Seventh-day Adventist belief system. A further aim was to understand how Seventh-day Adventists listen to pop music, and why they appear to embrace songs that promote behaviours and attitudes that run contrary to their beliefs. This is a mixed methods study. It entailed perusing the lyrics of pop songs in two ways. Firstly, 24 songs were selected that were addressed in 6 themes (4 songs per theme), the themes that have a bearing on some important aspects of the Seventh-day Adventist philosophy and lifestyle (Concept of Self; Hope; the State of the Dead; Time; Substance Use; and Love, Relationships and Sexuality). Twelve Seventh-day Adventist interviewees who serve as leaders in their local congregations, and representing various groups (i.e., unmarried youth, married young people, parents, seniors, people who listen to pop music on the radio, and those who are music leaders in their churches), stated how they engaged with pop music in general, and offered their perspectives on the 24 songs. Further, 4 pastors provided comments, in their official capacity, on the compatibility of these songs with Seventh-day Adventism. Secondly, 160 pop songs (i.e., the top 40 songs from the Billboard decade-end Hot 100 song charts, from decades 1980, 1990s, 2000s, and 2010s) were reviewed to gather a general sense of the types of content, themes and extent to which messages were being promoted. It was found that a large percentage of pop songs’ messages run contrary to the Seventh-day Adventist philosophy and approach to life, and that lyrics are becoming more explicit with each succeeding decade, in terms of behaviours and practices that are rejected by the Church. It was also found that many Seventh-day Adventists may be engaging with such music because they are attracted by the music and do not pay attention to the lyrics. Furthermore, it was ascertained that music can influence a change in beliefs and behaviours and that if Seventh-day Adventists want to practice their faith seriously, they need to pay attention to the type of music they listen to, especially the lyrics.
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    Towards a committed musicology.
    (1982) Salmon, Richard John.
    Music is a human activity and as suchitis a social phenomenon, integrally related to all other aspects of society. Societies do not exist before people - they are produced by people in active engagement with their environment. The most fundamental human activity caters to the satis­faction of basic needs (e.g. for food and shelter), and the exact nature of this activity depends on the degree to which the forces of material production are developed at that historical moment, i.e. the degree to which natural resources and technical skills are available for the production of the goods required to subsist. The process by which people produce what they need and the way in which they distribute their products establishes a relationship between such people, and the combination of these social relations and the productive forces in relation to which they develop is called a 'mode of production': Societies are complex, and while it is likely that more than one mode of production may co-exist, most societies have exhibited a dominant social relationship in which a few people have controlled the means of production, i.e. the available raw materials and the instruments of production. This control has placed these people in a position of power as the ruling class (e.g. the aristocracy in feudal times), and, in using their power to maintain their control, they have exploited subservient classes. In most Western countries today, the dominant mode of production is capitalism,in 􀀬hich the means of production is owned by a small class of capitalists as the result of a long history of inheritance, appro­priation and centralization. In terms of Marx's analysis of the dynamics of capitalism, products are exchanged on the basis of the amount of abstract labour embodied in them and this exchange-value characterizes them as 'commodities'. Commo­dities are exchanged, not for their immediate use-value, but for the purposes of accumulating capital. In the capitalist mode of production, labour-power itself is commoditized, its price being determined by the cost of the daily subsistence of labourers, which is paid to them as 'wages'. Because of the advantage of their ownership of the means of production, capitalists appropriate the products of labour and then sell them. They accumulate capital as a result of the difference between the value of labour-power as expressed in the wages they pay and the value of labour as embodied in the appropriated products. This difference is called 'surplus-value'. The labour which produces surplus-value is there­fore unpaid: it is surplus labour. Capitalists continually attempt to maximize surplus labour by extending working hours, expanding and centralizing production and developing productivity through co-operative labour and mechanization. Today, the accumulation and centralization of capital through its continual re-investment has led to the development of powerful monopolies which frequently antagonize those labour organi­zations such as trade unions which represent the interests of the exploited labouring class. The drive for productivity through mechanization has led to a decrease in the ratio between capital spent on labour and that spent on the means of production, with a consequent decrease in the proportion of surplus- value accrued. This is a contradiction which is central to capitalism, and, together with the fact that production is planned with accumulation and not consumption in mind, contributes to the recurrence of economic 'crises'. Our economy has the potential to produce a higher general standard of living, but this potential will not be fulfilled until the current domination of the means of production by capital is overcome, for capitalist social relations fetter the development of those very productive forces which make such a standard of living possible. These essential processes are often concealed in mystified appearances by an illusory understanding which Marx characterized as 'ideology'. For example, surplus-value is seen as 'profit', arising naturally in the difference between cost-price and selling price. The privileges of the ruling class also appear to be 'natural'. Such distortions as these,which obscure the 'contradictory and alienating social conditions' of capitalism, must be dispelled before musicology can formulate a relation­ship between music and society. If at this point it appears that economic theory is unrelated to musical concerns, then it needs to be re­emphasized that music is a social phenomenon and does not exist in a vacuum. In the same way as Marx described commodities as 'fetishized' when they are seen to have a life of their own, independent of the human relation­ships in which they are produced, so music is fetishized if it is not seen in relation to all social activities.
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    Indigenous African music (IAM) performance assessment: an exploration of the role of teachers during the grade 12 external practical examination.
    (2022) Nguqu, Nozuko.; Opondo, Patricia Achieng.
    Since the introduction of the outcomes-based education in 1997 that overcame the curricular divisions of the past, Indigenous African Music (IAM) has finally attained a seat in the national music Curriculum and Assessment Policy Statement (CAPS). However, due to its prominent mode of transmission which is aural/oral; lack of trained IAM teachers; and varied performance styles, schools still face performance assessment challenges. The study explores the dual role of teachers in order to examine what kind of competences that can be envisaged for them, specifically, during Grade 12 final practical examination. The main aim was to find out teacher perceptions on the current state of IAM performance assessment in Umlazi district and therefore determine how IAM performance and assessment guidelines can be further developed. Creswell’s (2013) social constructivist worldview whereby individuals seek understanding of the world in which they live and work, allows the researcher to present an explanation for the behavior and attitudes of IAM teachers, pertaining to their dual role, which is teaching and assessing the learners. Again, social constructivism as a learning theory which views learning as asocial process, underpins the study’s design and also informs the understanding of IAM performance assessment. Through a qualitative approach, the researcher purposively sampled individuals who have experienced IAM performance in the classroom setting. In this descriptive approach knowledge is constructed in a social environment, in which the researcher and the participants share their lived experiences. Through one-on-one semi-structured interviews, the study finds that, besides the limited number of IAM-trained teachers, the dearth of performance content/material in the music CAPS, results in teachers choosing certain topics and avoiding IAM performance. To mitigate this impediment, this study developed specified performance and assessment guidelines for selected IAM styles which act as a fragmented or criterion-referenced evaluation system that can ensure valid and reliable assessment results. The process of guidelines’ development was achieved through secondary data collection which were presented in forms of literature reviews and textual & structural analyses of each delimited IAM performance style. Furthermore, these guidelines constitute a framework that will aid assessors and non-IAM teachers who are willing to adapt to teaching the IAM stream in their schools.
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    Towards a jazz education programme for the senior secondary schools in South Africa.
    (1997) Ramnunan, Karendra Devroop.; Cox, Dusty.; Oehrle, Elizabeth Dittmar.
    Abstract available in PDF.
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    Local music and identity: a study of the signifiers of South African identity embedded in the South African Music Awards’ ‘Record of the Year’ listings from 2013 to 2018.
    (2020) De Vries, Lee-Ann Delarise.; Olsen, Kathryn Rita.
    This research paper explores the concept of a local identity through the gaze of a postapartheid South Africa. In discussing ‘local’, this study explores pertinent discourse surrounding what could be deemed as the South African experience. This study makes use of a Grounded Theory methodological approach. This particular methodology was used in order to ensure that all findings within the context of this study are strongly based on observations, i.e. the data, and not pre-established hypotheses. This process consequently necessitates the contextualisation of quantitative information because it is by means of this that we allow numerical data to reflect lived experience. In doing so, it allows for a re-contextualisation of the ‘local’ ideology in the context of the South African music industry. This is achieved through an analysis of the South African Music Awards’ Record of the Year category as an historical cache of the music of the time period in question. Through an understanding of the heterogeneous and intersectional nature of local identity(s), this study makes reference to a number of broad identities which have been pinpointed as being useful signifiers for our understanding of the post-apartheid South African society. This dissertation is rooted in the belief that local identity is grounded in a capitalistic society which is inherently built on principles of historic imposition, racialism and patriarchy. It is argued that the historic imposition present in contemporary South Africa contributes substantially to what it means to be a South African, and is inherent in the way we think or see ourselves. This represents what could be seen as a revision Stuart Hall’s ‘circuit of culture’ (1997).
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    Music composition in the 21st Century: exploring concertgoers’ aesthetic response to AI-generated music.
    (2021) Van Rensburg, Wessel Jacobus Jansen.; Devroop, Chatradari.
    We live in the information age where digitisation and computational technology have become integral and indispensable to our daily activities. Artificial intelligence (AI), quantum computing, and other such technologies increasingly impact and disrupt our lives as we connect with our world. Within the arts, a field once dominated by human creation, we now experience a penetration of AI and deep learning technologies. The researcher, a practising musician, became interested in how our ubiquitous interaction with AI technology affects our decision-making and how it relates specifically to the field of music composition. The manifestation of AI’s impact on music-making was met with the researcher’s excitement and trepidation. Given the researcher’s apprehension, he proposed investigating (1) the quality of AI creativity in the field of music composition and (2) how transparency of this AI creative employment affects aesthetic judgement. He designed his research using a mixed methods approach, comprising a quantitative phase in the form of an online questionnaire (based on the original AESTHEMOS instrument), followed by a qualitative phase of in-depth interviews. The researcher’s objectives were twofold: (1) to establish if a sample of concertgoers could discern aesthetically between compositions generated by humans and AI and (2) how knowledge of AI use during the compositional process affects our aesthetic appreciation of the artefacts. The researcher partly hypothesised that participants could not discern aesthetically between human and AI-generated compositions because of current available AI technology (through machine and deep learning). However, when AI employment is disclosed, aesthetic responses to compositions yield a negative response. To test his hypothesis, the researcher engaged thirty concertgoers in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, to evaluate aesthetically five symphonic works via an online questionnaire. During the follow-up interview process, the AI generation of two of the five compositions was disclosed, and general attitudes toward AI creativity was probed. Using data analytic tools such as the Mann-Whitney U test, the researcher confirmed his hypothesis and concluded that participants interact aesthetically with AI-generated compositions if they appear to be human-composed. Transparency of AI involvement, however, affects the aesthetic value of AIgenerated compositions. As AI weaves itself deeper into the human story, the familiarity of AI creativity will profoundly affect our notion of creativity, meaning and art creation of the future.
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    Raiding genres, remaking contemporary South African jazz discourse: the study of choices and ideals behind my compositional portfolio.
    (2019) Giandhari, Riley Joseph.; Gonsalves, Neil Joseph.; Olsen, Kathryn Rita.
    This thesis is presented as an autoethnography that documents the process of composing a portfolio of works that are identifiable as Jazz. Autoethnography is understood here as both a theory and a method. While my personal perspective is central, the social milieu in which I am positioned is also important as I understand composition as a process that is dependent on, and motivated by, context. In this way, composition is seen as closely tied to identity. The pieces fall into three ensemble categories: those composed with particular musicians in mind, those composed for specific instrumental combination; and those composed for a big band format. In the first category, my focus as a composer is to write music with a particular set of musicians in mind. In the second category, I compose and arrange for instrumentation. In the third category, my focus is writing for a big band, in which I create a simulation; I use recording software to programme the instruments. The intention is to interrogate and analyse how and why I made the compositional decisions, and to expose my perceptions of how the process of composition unfolded. Underlying my compositional strategies is the idea that as a fundamentally improvisational idiom, jazz can accommodate musical characteristics and techniques associated with other established genres like Rock, Goema, Gqom, Latin, and Afro-Cuban music. The motivation for my approach to composition is to bring the jazz idiom closer to the diverse musical environment which I experience in Durban.
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    A study on the creative processes of Ngalanga traditional music and dance from Mozambique: expressions of the Mozambican Chopi immigrant community of Clermont Township in Durban.
    (2018) Chemane, José Alberto Daniel.; Opondo, Patricia Achieng.
    This study is an ethnographic enquiry on the creative processes engaged in ngalanga by a migrant community of Mozambicans in Clermont Township in Durban. It discusses how creative actions are conceived and applied to indigenous dance traditions of a migrant community and how these traditions find expressions within the context of their new environment. Ngalanga is one of the indigenous music traditions that is found among the Chopi from Mozambique, and whose studies within ethnomusicological circles is scanty. Literature available on Chopi musical tradition largely focuses on the timbila tradition although other musical traditions such as ngalanga find equal space within the performance repertoire of the Chopi. This research draws on the theoretical formulations as grounded in interpretative innovation, socio-musical practice and system model of creativity to understand how creative processes are engaged within the creation and performances of ngalanga and how these serve as a tool to negotiate space for self-expression, recognition, cultural dialogue and a means of sustenance within this migrant community. Data for the study was collected through interviews and participant observations of musical activities of the Mozambican migrant community in Clermont Township in Durban that performs ngalanga in addition to available literature on the music and dance traditions of the Chopi. The study is organized in six chapters - chapter one is an introduction to the study, chapter two discusses the body of literature on Chopi music and dance traditions. Chapter three examines migration issues as related to Mozambique and ngalanga performance analysis, chapter four discusses the creative conventions in ngalanga, chapter five focuses on ngalanga dance analysis, and chapter six summarizes and concludes the study.
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    Postcolonial nostalgia and meaning: new perspectives on contemporary South African writings.
    (2019) Cornelius, Beverley Jane.; Dimitriu, Ileana.
    This dissertation explores the concept and application of nostalgia in a selection of contemporary South African novels chosen as representative of the multi-cultural diversity of South Africa’s literature. The study explores novels by four authors – Etienne van Heerden (Ancestral Voices; 30 Nights in Amsterdam), Rayda Jacobs (The Slave Book; Joonie), Mongane Wally Serote (Revelations; Rumours), and Ronnie Govender (Song of the Atman; The Lahnee’s Pleasure) – to analyse these authors’ nostalgic treatment of the past as complementing their explorations of the anxieties of the present. Much of South African literature deals with the past, and postcolonial themes predominate: e.g. dislocation, diaspora, hybridity, ambivalence, home, identity, and belonging. Many authors dealing with issues of the past write nostalgically about it: either fondly, or with a sense of yearning, even though the past that is examined might have been turbulent and traumatic. However, this does not necessarily mean that their representations of the past are superficial or sentimental. On the contrary, nostalgic writers grapple with the paradoxical emotions associated with longed-for times and places. The term ‘nostalgia’ has often been misunderstood as an unreliable or biased form of memory. This is not always the case: the conventional understanding of nostalgia as ‘bitter-sweet’ gives the first clue as to the tensions inherent in its complex and nuanced texture. It is misleading to take nostalgia at its ‘sweet’ face-value only without also exploring its ‘bitter’ counterpart, as current research indicates. This study applies the concept of ‘nostalgia’ as a complex conceptual and analytical tool within recent debates in postcolonial literary study. In my investigation, I draw especially on Boym’s (2001) distinction between ‘restorative’ vs ‘reflective’ nostalgia, as well as on Medalie’s (2010) differentiation between ‘evolved’ vs ‘unreflecting’ nostalgia. I have also made intenstive use of related postcolonial concepts – such as ‘space and identity’ and ‘trauma and haunting’ – to inform my analysis. Finally, this study illustrates that contemporary writers can harness nostalgia as a positive force; and that instances of nostalgia, if critically applied and analysed, can unearth submerged memories and help transform trauma into meaning, thus providing fresh points of entry towards a reimagined future.
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    Evaluating Shona liturgical music in localised practices of inculturation within the Catholic Mass in Zimbabwe.
    Machingura, Crispinah.; Dlamini, Sazi Stephen.
    This study evaluates practices of inculturation in the composition and performance of Shona liturgical music for the Catholic Mass in the parishes of St Theresa Seke and Glen Norah-Budiriro, which are both located in Harare, Zimbabwe. Whilst focusing on Shona liturgical songs and their performance as expressions of Shona culture, this research is premised on diversity in local interpretations of inculturation among the Shona Catholic subjects of this study. Chapter 1 introduces elements of the conceptual framework of the research topic, the research methodology and also presents the theoretical underpinnings of the study. Chapter 2 focuses on the interpretations of inculturation by the parishioners and local leadership, represented by bishops of the two local parishes under focus. In Chapter 2, only the bishops‟ and parishioners‟ interpretations are taken into consideration. Chapter 3 deals further with interpretations of inculturation by Shona composers and probes how this influences their approach to composition. Chapter 4 discussions are centred on the role of parishioners in the performance of Shona songs for the Mass, and also investigates the musical ramifications of differences between parishioners‟ and composers‟ views of the Shona culture in Shona liturgical songs. By focusing on musical instruments, dance and language both the composed and performed elements of Shona liturgical songs are investigated in terms of how they express the Shona culture, using pioneering and current examples of Shona liturgical compositions by important composers such as Stephen Magwa Ponde, Chaka Chawasarira, Nicholas Muchenu, and John Kina Dzingai. Chapter 5 presents a summary and conclusion to this thesis.
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    An ethnography on the uses of chinyambera traditional dance as a coping mechanism by marginalised communities in Gweru Zimbabwe : the case of Tavirima Traditional Dance Group.
    (2013) Mutero, Innocent Tinashe.; Opondo, Patricia Achieng.
    This dissertation is an ethnographic expository of how Tavirima Traditional Dance Group uses chinyambera traditional dance as a copying mechanism for marginalised communities in Gweru, Zimbabwe. This study contextualises and analyses how Tavirima’s performances of chinyambera reflect the socio-political environment in Zimbabwe and how the music works to bring about social change. It gives further insight into and analysis of how traditional songs metaphorically speak out against the authoritarian government of Zimbabwe led by Robert Gabriel Mugabe, and how dance embodies dissent against the same. The dissertation provides transcriptions and contextual interpretations of chinyambera songs which Tavirima uses as agents for social change focusing on how the songs reflect, contest, resist and mediate in the prevailing socio-political crisis in Zimbabwe. The research also discusses how chinyambera’s roots, expressiveness and energies influence Tavirima to choose the dance over a myriad of other Zimbabwean traditional dances. The theoretical framework for this study is underlined by the African Popular Culture Theory, Alternative Cultural Theory and Positive Deviance Approach creating a vantage point through which the study is framed to analyse the ability of popular arts in bringing about social change and how subalterns take charge of their destiny by defying restrictive and oppressing systems through a metamorphosis of traditional music and dance.
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    Composition 2 [music manuscript] : portfolio.
    (2004) Tozer, Fiona.
    No abstract available.
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    Mugithi perfomance as a form of social cohesion among the Agikuyu of Kenya.
    (2010) Njenga, Maureen Charity Muthoni.; Opondo, Patricia Achieng.
    This research investigated what the musical characteristics of mwomboko music were, what its social characteristics were in terms of performers, listening, venues and class relations to what extent this music functioned as a means of engendering feelings of personal empowerment under conditions of social exclusion and how this music functioned as a catalyst for social cohesion. This study is necessary for it may contribute to the further study of the mugithi one-man guitar performance. I worked with the theoretical approach that music can create or maintain social cohesion. I also looked a how it can contribute to group solidarity and so increase the effectiveness of collective action. I am worked with the theory of social cohesion through music which works with the idea that music can be used as an avenue to create a sense of belonging to a group or community. Through the affirmation of the society's identity music also ended up affirming the individual 's identity. While this study specifically focused on mwomboko music within mugithi performance style there were factors that had and continued to influence this type of music's performance and growth. This study shall try to investigate ways in which the development in Kenya influenced music's role in social identity, why music is used as a channel for social cohesion and the issues that bring up ethnic identity within multicultural urban setting.
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    Jazz travels : a portfolio of jazz compositions and arrangements of African inspiration.
    (2010) Drace, John Miles.; Naidoo, Mageshen.
    The pieces presented in this portfolio are in some ways a synthesis of my own musical history up to this point in time. Though I was scarcely aware as a child, I now know that the diverse strains of modem African American music and their largely non-African American inspirations originate from the larger, older branches of Jazz and Blues. Nevertheless, the music that forms the lion's share of my early musical memories-African American and African American inspired music- is still quite distinct from its West African ancestral music that I would later come to learn and love so much. After being inspired primarily by Rhythm and Blues, Rock, Blues and Jazz through the pre-teen and teenage years, I discovered Latin music of Cuban origin. Soon after that I began to explore traditional Afro-Cuban and West African music. These new musics resonated strongly with me, and I began to learn and play them not long after that first exposure. A probable reason for the aforementioned resonance lies in the 'rhythmic priming' provided by my early exposure to African American music. This state of rhythmic awareness was excited by the complex rhythmic interplay subsequently heard between West African musicians and between Afro-Cuban musicians, hinted at but rarely as fully developed in the African American music I was used to. In retrospect, it makes perfect sense that this rhythmic sensibility, developed through exposure to American music, would be stimulated and fulfilled by traditional West African percussion music. As much as I came to enjoy that type of polyrhythmic, percussion based music, however, in time I also began to wonder at the possibility of creating a similar music but with more harmonic movement, perhaps even modulation to different keys. This would require different instruments, and it would require mastery of another musical world: that of western, and in particular for my sensibilities, Jazz harmony. This pursuit-the attempt to combine at once an African rhythmic sensibility with a Jazz harmonic sensibility-is one that will no doubt occupy me for some time into the future. It is also a major source of inspiration, sometimes obvious and at other times more subtle, in the creation of this portfolio. The aforementioned fusion of African rhythm and Western harmony, in conceptual terms, is not something altogether new. That rhythmic, melodic and harmonic complexities co-exist in the Jazz tradition is no secret. What's more, much of the music referred to as 'Latin' is named as such because it has already absorbed and incorporated the rhythmic vitality of the African origins of much of the populace, and their predisposition to Afro-Latin (Afro-Cuban, Afro-Dominican, Afro-Puerto Rican, Afro-Brazilian, etc.) folkloric music with its direct link to the percussive music of West Africa. However, composition and arrangement are processes of the individual. I don't claim to be the first one to attempt the stated objective combination of African and European elements; what I can say is that I am the first one to do it in my own particular way. Thus this portfolio presents a combination, not only of different styles, but of underlying objectives as well. These objectives have been in mind throughout the creative process. In addition to the aforementioned objective of blending African and Jazz elements (1), it has been my intent to demonstrate proficiency in more traditional Jazz, Latin and even orchestral arranging frameworks (2), hopefully achieving a balance that allows my own voice to shine subtly through (3).
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    Writing against exile : a chronotopic reading of the autobiographies of Miriam Makeba, Joe Mogotsi, and Hugh Masekela.
    (2006) Dalamba, Lindelwa.; Ballantine, Christopher John.
    This dissertation analyses the autobiographies of Miriam Makeba, Joe Mogotsi and Hugh Masekela. The story of these formerly exiled musicians' lives as musicians who embodied the urbanising and eclectic black musical ethos of the 1950s onward has been integral to the music historiography on this era. The exilic trajectory of their story also has political resonance, as it parallels the shifts in structures of power characteristic of apartheid South Africa. Popular discourses that construct and narrate an incrementally conscientizing South African populist culture through this period have therefore also represented the musicians, through written and visual material, with this political resonance in mind. The musicians' autobiographies, however, articulate discourses of the nation from positions other these. These other positions are interanimated by literary, musical and socio-political discourses that already pervade the South African historical sphere. This informs the dialogic interplay of time, space and character in their texts, which I examine using the literary figure of the chronotope as a perceptual tool for their reading. Through analysis, I unpack how time becomes symbolically charged and space becomes mythologized in the autobiographies, how departure and eventual exile are narrated, and how the subsequent chronotopic rupture created by exile affects narration of home. Reading the struggle for authorship and authority evident in the texts' vacillation between biographical and autobiographical 'truth', the possible significances towards which this struggle points for a (re ) interpretation of South Africa's (hi)story of exile permeates the subject and process of this research.
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    The role of rap performance in reinforcing or challenging participants' perceptions of 'race' in post-apartheid South Africa, Durban.
    (2008) Chimba, Musonda Mabuza.; Ballantine, Christopher John.
    This ethnographic study concerns itself with the role that local rap performance plays in either reinforcing or challenging perceptions of 'race' amongst the participants of hip-hop culture in Durban, South Africa, and what this implies for the prospects of reconciliation. Using Cohen's (1989) theory of community and Grossberg's (1996) theory of affective alliances, I explore the ways in which music may create and maintain differences and commonalities between groups of people. It is my hypothesis that genre conventions and connotations, and the discourses that circulate about rap music (for example, rap music as a form of expression particular to the 'black Atlantic' diaspora and conditioned by a racially segregated society [Rose 1994]), allow hip-hop to either reinforce or challenge participants' perceptions of 'race'. I examine how musical and lyrical utterances thrust into a semantic historical and socio-political context limit how rap performance can mean and how, as a dialogic speech genre, rap can uphold, subvert or negotiate its genre associations, including, through the use of double-voiced discourse, dominant ideas concerning 'race' and cultural identity. Acknowledging the idiom as of a form of black cultural expression (Rose 1994), interviewees mention narratives of hip-hop's historical origins, rap artists' use of Five Percenter and Black Nationalist ideologies, and poverty, as factors that either reinforce or challenge notions of 'race'. The simultaneous transgression of and/or adherence to, racialized space and spatialized 'race' (Forman 2002) by different 'races', as well as the presence or absence of multilingualism, are viewed as indicators of the level of commitment to the notion of a democratic place for all 'race' and language groups in post-apartheid South Africa. It is the aim of this thesis to add to the body of knowledge concerning the nature of our post-apartheid identities, what influences them and in what way. And in a broader context, to explore the role of music in societies in transition and the role it might play in facilitating an ability to 'imagine culture beyond the colour line' (Gilroy 2000).
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    Pennywhistle kwela : a musical, historical and socio-political analysis.
    (1993) Allen, Lara Victoria.; Ballantine, Christopher John.
    This thesis is an exploration of the history of the pennywhistle in black South African popular music, the most important style to evolve around this instrument being kwela music. An analysis of kwela is conducted from several perspectives: historical, musical, socio-cultural and political. Chapter I explores the urban South African musical styles which preceded and influenced kwela. The first of these genres was marabi, which developed in Johannesburg's slumyards in the first three decades of the this century. Marabi was followed by tsaba-tsaba in the late thirties, which in tum gave way to the swing influenced genre of "African Jazz" in the forties. Chapter II chronologically traces the use of the pennywhistle in urban black South African popular music. An examination of kwela is preceded by a discussion of the pennywhistle-and-drum "Scottish" marching bands of the thirties and forties, and the rhythm-and-blues pennywhistle style of the early fifties. Various venues and their effect on the performance of kwela are explored, as are the effects of international recognition on the style's development. Chapter III comprises an in-depth musical analysis of kwela's stylistic components. The structure of kwela music and its harmonic, melodic and rhythmic components are examined. A discussion of kwela's instrumentation includes an examination of the roles of the guitar, banjo, string bass, drum-set, pennywhistle and saxophone. Chapter IV is an exploration of the social context and cultural milieu which spawned and nurtured the development of kwela music. Chapter V examines the relationship between kwela and South African politics in the fifties. An overview of this political environment is followed by an examination of the effects of particular apartheid legislation on the development of music in general and kwela in particular. Chapter VI concludes with an exploration of the ways in which various interest groups were able to find meaning and identity in kwela music. Included here, for instance, are the ways in which kwela contributed to the formation of urban black identity, and how the style came to have meaning for various white interest groups. Finally, the meaning of kwela today is considered.