Three MUSIC FYS courses this term!


MUSC 121F Queering Russian Music
How have the sexuality of a Russian composer Pyotr I. Tchaikovsky and international success of a popular music duo t.A.T.u. shaped the understanding of gender, sexuality, and queerness in the Russian context? This entry-level course introduces a variety of theoretical and journalistic approaches and presents a historical overview of Russian music centered around queerness, gender, sexuality, and power. Using methodologies of queer studies and queer theory, we will examine a variety of musical genres and musicians ranging from Imperial Russia to the present-day Russian popular and film music. The topics will focus on women composers, queer genres, queer sexual and musical identity.

Selected personalities examined in the course:
Catherine II (the Great), Pyotr I. Tchaikovsky, Vaslav Nijinsky, Sofia Gubaidulina, Galina Ustvolskaya, Alla Pugacheva, Zemfira, t.A.T.u, Pussy Riot, AIGEL, Little Big, Manizha, Oxxxymiron, ICEPEAK

MUSC 122F Writing about Sound: What the audible can teach us about our world
Sound speaks volumes, even if what it tells us can be tricky to put into words. If we listen critically, sound can teach us important lessons–like how technology is evolving, society changing, and what it means to be human. That is why sound has recently preoccupied the academic study of music, visual arts, media, ecology, race, disability, architecture, economics, and the history of science. Touching on each of these areas, this course blends core texts and case studies in the interdisciplinary field of sound studies to offer something interesting to all students, regardless of their chosen major. As part of Wesleyan’s first-year seminar program, the course has two aims: to explore how philosophers, ethnographers, practitioners, and journalists have written about sound; and to help students cultivate good habits for putting their own arguments into writing. There are no prerequisites to join the class, and assignments will focus on developing weekly reading responses into longer-form essays.

MUSC 131F Gender and Sexuality in Hip Hop (FYS)
This survey course is designed to present students with a variety of issues pertaining to gender and sexuality in aspects of hip-hop music and culture, including music video imagery and artists such as Nicki Minaj and Missy Elliott. In addition to hip-hop music, students will examine other aspects of hip-hop culture such as DJing and graffiti, as well as perspectives from outside of the African-American community.
MW 1:20-2:40 DDC100