Music in Global Perspective

Key information

Start date
End date
Year of study
Year 1
Term 2
Module code
FHEQ Level
School of Arts & Department of Music

Module overview

Music in Global Perspective introduces aspects of the discipline of ethnomusicology with a particular focus on musical sound and performance.

The module covers styles of teaching and learning cross-culturally, including approaches to teaching world music in the classroom. Students consider ways of representing musical structures and styles from the perspective of researchers, teachers and performers. Students engage with approaches to musical creativity, and processes of composition and improvisation.

We consider anthropological and psychological approaches to musical performance, embodiment and affect, and their relevance in different cultural contexts, including approaches to music and the body, music in ritual contexts, music and healing, as well as the cultural study of musical instruments.

Objectives and learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module a student will be able to

  • Comment critically on examples of musical styles and structures.
  • Discuss critically the links between culturally embedded meanings and musical style.
  • Explain the creative processes involved in musical improvisation and composition.
  • Apply and evaluate theories of embodiment and affect to cross-cultural examples of music-making.
  • Recognise and apply a range of strategies for musical teaching and learning.


  • Lectures: 1 hour per week
  • Seminars: 1 hour per week

Method of assessment

  • 750-1,000 word performance analysis (worth 25% of marks)
  • Essay (2,500-3,000 words) or radio programme (30 minutes) or transcription and analysis project (1-2 pages transcription plus 1,000 words) (worth 75%)

Suggested reading

  • Qureshi, Regula B., 2007. Sufi Music of India and Pakistan: sound and meaning in Qawwali. Cambridge: Cambridge U Press.
  • Koen, Benjamin D., ed., 2011. The Oxford Handbook of Medical Ethnomusicology. New York: Oxford University Press.
  • Michael Tenzer & John Roeder (eds.) 2011. Analytical and Cross-Cultural Studies in World Music. Oxford University Press.
  • Patrik N. Juslin and John Sloboda eds. 2011. Handbook of Music and Emotion. Theory, Research, Applications. Oxford University Press.
  • Clarke, Eric, Nicola Dibben and Stephanie Pitts, 2009. Music and Mind in Everyday Life. New York: Oxford University Press.


Important notice regarding changes to programmes and modules.