Matching Items (29)

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The collegiate vocal jazz ensemble: an historical and current perspective on the development, current state, and future direction of the genre

Description

The Vocal Jazz ensemble, a uniquely American choral form, has grown and flourished in the past half century largely through the efforts of professionals and educators throughout the collegiate music community. This document provides historical data as presented through live

The Vocal Jazz ensemble, a uniquely American choral form, has grown and flourished in the past half century largely through the efforts of professionals and educators throughout the collegiate music community. This document provides historical data as presented through live and published interviews with key individuals involved in the early development of collegiate Vocal Jazz, as well as those who continue this effort currently. It also offers a study of the most influential creative forces that provided the spark for everyone else's fire. A frank discussion on the obstacles encountered and overcome is central to the overall theme of this research into a genre that has moved from a marginalized afterthought to a legitimate, more widely accepted art form. In addition to the perspective provided to future generations of educators in this field, this document also discusses the role of collegiate music academia in preserving and promoting the Vocal Jazz ensemble. The discussion relies on recent data showing the benefits of Vocal Jazz training and the need for authenticity towards its universal integration into college and university vocal performance and music education training.

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Date Created
2013

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Generation next: young Muslim Americans narrating self while debating faith, community, and country

Description

"Culture talk" figures prominently in the discussions of and about Muslims, both locally and globally. Culture, in these discussions, is considered to be the underlying cause of gender and generational divides giving rise to an alleged "identity crisis." Culture also

"Culture talk" figures prominently in the discussions of and about Muslims, both locally and globally. Culture, in these discussions, is considered to be the underlying cause of gender and generational divides giving rise to an alleged "identity crisis." Culture also presumably conceals and contaminates "pure/true Islam." Culture serves as the scaffold on which all that divides Muslim American immigrants and converts is built; furthermore, the fear of a Muslim cultural takeover underpins the "Islamization of America" narrative. This dissertation engages these generational and "immigrant"-"indigenous" fissures and the current narratives that dominate Muslim and public spheres. It does so through the perspectives of the offspring of converts and immigrants. As the children and grandchildren of immigrants and converts come of age, and distant as they are from historical processes and experiences that shaped the parents' generations while having shared a socialization process as both Muslim and American, what role do they play in the current chapter of Islam in post-9/11 America? Will the younger generation be able to cross the divides, mend the fissures, and play a pivotal role in an "American Muslim community"? Examining how younger generations of both backgrounds view each other and their respective roles in forging an American Muslim belonging, agenda and discourse is a timely and much needed inquiry. This project aims to contribute by shedding more light on the identities, perspectives and roles of these younger generations through the four dominant narratives of identity crisis, pure/true Islam vs. Cultural Islam, the Islamization of America, and creation of an American Muslim community/identity/culture. These narratives are both part of public discourse and themes generated from interviews, a questionnaire\survey, and personal observation. This ethnographic study examines how American born and/or raised offspring of both converts to Islam and immigrant Muslims in the Phoenix and Chicago metropolitan areas define self and community, how they negotiate fissures and fault lines (ethnicity, race, class, gender, and religious interpretation) within their communities, and how their faith informs daily life and envisions a future. I utilize participant observation, interviews, and surveys and examine digital, visual and published media to answer these questions.

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2013

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Spaces of interest: financial governance and debt subjectivity

Description

This dissertation examines automobile title lending practices to interrogate debt as an embodied experience. Alternative financial services such as title lending provide a way to link socio-economic inequality to instruments of financial debt. The predominant research on inequality

This dissertation examines automobile title lending practices to interrogate debt as an embodied experience. Alternative financial services such as title lending provide a way to link socio-economic inequality to instruments of financial debt. The predominant research on inequality focuses on wage, income, and asset wealth; rarely is a direct connection made between socio-economic inequality and the object of debt. My interest lies beyond aggregate amounts of debt to also consider the ways in which different bodies have access to different forms of debt. This project examines how particular subprime instruments work to reinforce structural inequalities associated with race, class, and gender and how specific populations are increasingly coming to rely on debt to subsist. Using in-depth interviews, geospatial mapping, and descriptive statistical analysis I show the importance of recognizing debt not only as a conditional object but also as a lived condition of being. I conclude with discussions on dispossession and financial precarity to consider how the normative discourse of debt needs to change.

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2016

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They called me an alien: Hanns Eisler's American years, 1935-1948

Description

In the 1930s, with the rise of Nazism, many artists in Europe had to flee their homelands and sought refuge in the United States. Austrian composer Hanns Eisler who had risen to prominence as a significant composer during the Weimar

In the 1930s, with the rise of Nazism, many artists in Europe had to flee their homelands and sought refuge in the United States. Austrian composer Hanns Eisler who had risen to prominence as a significant composer during the Weimar era was among them. A Jew, an ardent Marxist and composer devoted to musical modernism, he had established himself as a writer of film music and Kampflieder, fighting songs, for the European workers' movement. After two visits of the United States in the mid-1930s, Eisler settled in America where he spent a decade (1938-1948), composed a considerable number of musical works, including important film scores, instrumental music and songs, and, in collaboration with Theodor W. Adorno, penned the influential treatise Composing for the Films. Yet despite his substantial contributions to American culture American scholarship on Eisler has remained sparse, perhaps due to his reputation as the "Karl Marx in Music." In this study I examine Eisler's American exile and argue that Eisler, through his roles as a musician and a teacher, actively sought to enrich American culture. I will present background for his exile years, a detailed overview of his American career as well as analyses and close readings of several of his American works, including three of his American film scores, Pete Roleum and His Cousins (1939), Hangmen Also Die (1943), and None But the Lonely Heart (1944), and the String Quartet (1940), Third Piano Sonata (1943), Woodbury Liederbüchlein (1941), and Hollywood Songbook (1942-7). This thesis builds upon unpublished correspondence and documents available only in special collections at the University of Southern California (USC), as well as film scores in archives at USC and the University of California, Los Angeles. It also draws on Eisler studies by such European scholars as Albrecht Betz, Jürgen Schebera, and Horst Weber, as well as on research of film music scholars Sally Bick and Claudia Gorbman. As there is little written on the particulars of Eisler's American years, this thesis presents new facts and new perspectives and aims at a better understanding of the artistic achievements of this composer.

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Date Created
2013

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A survey of the use of homemade overpressure chemical devices in several cities in the United States: determining the impact on the United States

Description

Homemade overpressure chemical devices, commonly known as bottle bombs, are a current topic in the news media. These homemade overpressure chemical devices are a variety of homemade chemical bombs which are constructed by youth for amusement, mischief, or misbehaviors. These

Homemade overpressure chemical devices, commonly known as bottle bombs, are a current topic in the news media. These homemade overpressure chemical devices are a variety of homemade chemical bombs which are constructed by youth for amusement, mischief, or misbehaviors. These bombs are made from common household chemicals. The media is frequently presenting stories about the dangers of these homemade overpressure chemical devices. The media reports that this trend is spurred by the use of YouTube and other social media. As a result of the amount of information about homemade overpressure chemical devices on YouTube and other social media, youths can quickly learn how to fabricate and use these devices. However, these youths, like many in the community, are unaware of the hazards or legal consequences associated with this activity. At this time, reliable information about this form of homemade chemical bombs is limited. Therefore, this research project will explore the culture, fabrication, legality, and risks associated with these homemade chemical bombs. Then, the research will determine if the construction of these devices is a national problem as suggested by the news media and first responder organizations with an annually increasing number incidents, property damage, and injuries. The Center for Disease Control's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report for the week of July 18, 2003 presented the last and only known scientific attempt to determine the impact of homemade overpressure chemical devices on society. However, the Center for Disease Control was not able to get an accurate determination of the trends associated with homemade overpressure chemical devices due to the limitations of the data it reviewed. This research project looks at the data available from national databases, municipal databases, and the first responders of nine cities to determine the impact that Homemade Overpressure Chemical Devices are having on these communities within the United States. The research concluded that the number of Homemade Overpressure Chemical Devices cannot be gathered from either a national database or municipal databases. Interviews with first responders indicate that all areas of the United States are experiencing some Homemade Overpressure Chemical Device activity. However, this activity usually remains low until spurred on in a fad-like pattern.

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2011

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Mormons and the World's Fair 1893: a study of religious and cultural agency and transformation

Description

My dissertation project, Mormons at the World's Fair: A Study of Religious and Cultural Agency and Transformation looks at a pivotal period of transition within the American religious and political national culture (1880-1907). Using Mormonism as an important focal point

My dissertation project, Mormons at the World's Fair: A Study of Religious and Cultural Agency and Transformation looks at a pivotal period of transition within the American religious and political national culture (1880-1907). Using Mormonism as an important focal point of national controversy and cultural change, this dissertation looks at the interconnections between Mormon transitions and the larger national transformations then under way in what historians call the "progressive" era. Prominent scholars have recognized the 1893 World's Fair as an important moment that helped initiate the "dawning" of religious pluralism in America. This national response to American religious diversity, however, is limited to a nineteenth-century historiographical framework, which made real religious pluralism in the next century more difficult. Bringing together into one narrative the story of the anti-polygamy crusades of the 1880s, the ambivalent presence (and non presence) of Mormonism at the World's Fair of 1893, and the drawn-out US Senate Hearings and ultimate victory of Mormon apostle and Senator Reed Smoot in 1907, this dissertation offers new insights into the meaning and limitations of American religious liberty, the dynamics of minority agency, as well as a deeper understanding of America's developing national identity.

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2012

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Mormonism and the new spirituality: LDS women's hybrid spiritualities

Description

This dissertation illuminates overlaps in Mormonism and the New Spirituality in North America, showing their shared history and epistemologies. As example of these connections, it introduces ethnographic data from women who are members of the Church of Jesus Christ of

This dissertation illuminates overlaps in Mormonism and the New Spirituality in North America, showing their shared history and epistemologies. As example of these connections, it introduces ethnographic data from women who are members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in order to show (a) how living LDS women adapt and integrate elements from the New Spirituality with Mormon ideas about the nature of reality into hybrid spiritualities; and (b) how they negotiate their blended religious identities both in relation to the current American New Spirituality milieu and the highly centralized, hierarchical, and patriarchal Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The study focuses on religious hybridity with an emphasis on gender and the negotiation of power deriving from patriarchal religious authority, highlighting the dance between institutional power structures and individual authority. It illuminates processes and discourses of religious adaptation and synthesis through which these LDS women creatively and provocatively challenge LDS Church formal power structures.

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2012

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From Frankenstein to District 9: ecocritical readings of classic and contemporary fiction and film in the anthropocene

Description

From Frankenstein to District 9: Ecocritical Readings of Classic and Contemporary Fiction and Film demonstrates how American studies methodologies, ecological literary criticism, and environmental justice theory provide both time-tested and new analytical tools for reading texts from transnational perspectives. Recently,

From Frankenstein to District 9: Ecocritical Readings of Classic and Contemporary Fiction and Film demonstrates how American studies methodologies, ecological literary criticism, and environmental justice theory provide both time-tested and new analytical tools for reading texts from transnational perspectives. Recently, American literary scholars have been responding to calls for collective interdisciplinary response to widening social disparities and species collapses caused by climate change in the new epoch recently being termed "the anthropocene." In response, I analyze canonical texts, such as Mary Shelley's Frankenstein and Aldous Huxley's Brave New World in juxtaposition with Neill Blomkamp's South African science fiction thriller District 9 and contemporary US American novels such as Toni Morrison's Sula, William Faulkner's "The Bear" in Go Down, Moses and Richard Power's Generosity and The Echo Maker, to show how writers, filmmakers, and academics have been calling attention to dramatic climate events that consequently challenge the public to rethink the relationships among human beings to other species, and to ecological systems of low predictability, high variability, and frequent extremes. Rather than focusing solely on the "human," I examine how the relationships and livelihoods of multi-species communities shape and are shaped by political, economic, and cultural forces. As a whole, this dissertation seeks to make abstract, often intangible global patterns and concepts accessible by providing models for what I call "readings in the anthropocene" or re-readings of classic and contemporary texts and film that offer insights into changing human behavior and suggesting alternative management practices of local and global commons as well as opportunities to imagine how to live in and beyond the anthropocene.

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2015

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Migrantes y exiliados euiberolatinos: espacios creados vía objetos desplazados en las maletas

Description

Se examinan desde una perspectiva autobiográfica las obras de Yolanda Cruz, Saúl Cuevas, Víctor Fuentes, John Leguizamo, Gustavo Pérez-Firmat, Roberto Quesada, y Esmeralda Santiago bajo los filtros de los espacios creados por la migración y/o el exilio, para lo cual

Se examinan desde una perspectiva autobiográfica las obras de Yolanda Cruz, Saúl Cuevas, Víctor Fuentes, John Leguizamo, Gustavo Pérez-Firmat, Roberto Quesada, y Esmeralda Santiago bajo los filtros de los espacios creados por la migración y/o el exilio, para lo cual se toma en cuenta el bagaje cultural de objetos que cada uno de estos autores aporta en el panorama cultural euiberolatino en los Estados Unidos. Para su análisis crítico, se consideran en un primer plano el pensamiento en Imaginary Communities: Utopia, the Nation, and the Spatial Histories of Modernity (2002) de Phillip Wegner sobre las comunidades imaginarias creadas desde los espacios utópicos que se convierten en realidad desde un enfoque sociohistórico en un ambiente de Estado moderno. Asimismo, se interpreta la ideología como Misplaced Objects; Migrating Collections and Recollections in Europe and the Americas (2009) de Silvia Spitta sobre los objetos desubicados y la transformación que conlleva con dicho movimiento vía el desplazamiento en los espacios de migración y exilio de los autores en este estudio. Se consideran ciertas similares aportaciones existentes como Hispanic New York: A Sourcebook (2010) de Claudio Iván Remeseira cuyo estudio particular enfoca a unos habitantes euiberolatinos de la gran urbe neoyorquina. Para redondear el pensamiento crítico se ha incluido la obra Lugares decoloniales: Espacios de intervención en las Américas (2008), editada por Ramón Grosfoguel y Roberto Almanza Hernández. Este enfoque funciona como el marco crítico para la perspectiva de nuestro texto que examina los bagajes culturales de las regiones como Zacatecas-Durango y Oaxaca, México; La Habana, Cuba; Santurce, Puerto Rico; Olanchito, Honduras; Bogotá, Colombia y Madrid, España y hasta los de sus nuevos espacios en Phoenix, Los Ángeles, Miami-Chapel Hill, Manhattan, Queens y Santa Bárbara, en los Estados Unidos y más allá en Latinoamérica, Europa y África.

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2015

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Narrative exploits: space and trauma in contemporary American literature

Description

This dissertation analyzes contemporary American literature, which includes novels, graphic novels, film, and television of the last forty years, to deconstruct the critical relationship between lived space, institutional power, and trauma. It examines literary representations of traumatic moments in recent

This dissertation analyzes contemporary American literature, which includes novels, graphic novels, film, and television of the last forty years, to deconstruct the critical relationship between lived space, institutional power, and trauma. It examines literary representations of traumatic moments in recent American history--the attacks on the World Trade Center, Hurricane Katrina, the emergence of the Homeland Security state, and the introduction of the "new metropolis"--to demonstrate that collective trauma at the turn of the century is very much a product of the individual's complex relationship to the state and its institutional auxiliaries. As many philosophers and social critics have argued, institutional forces in contemporary America often deprive individuals of active political engagement through processes of narrative production, and this study discusses how literature both represents and simulates the traumatic consequences of this encounter. Looking to theories on urban, domestic, and textual space, this dissertation explores and problematizes the political and psychological dimensions of space, demonstrating how trauma is enacted through space and how individuals may utilize space and exploit narrative to achieve critical distance from institutional power. Literature as a narrative medium presents vital opportunities both for exposing the machinery of institutional power and for generating positions against the narratives produced by the state.

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Date Created
2013