Popular Music in Postwar German Culture

2016 UT Germanic Studies Workshop

Fri, March 4, 2016 | AT&T Executive Education and Conference Center

decorative icon of recording
decorative icon of recording

March 4 - 6, 2016

A musical undercurrent has long permeated German culture. Classical music has been essential to the making of the German nation state, definitions of national identity and cultural heritage, and theories of mass culture and modernity. Music was an integral part of the historical avant-gardes and its reconfiguration of the discourses and practices of classical music, folk music, and popular music. Meanwhile musical styles such as jazz, rock ‘n’ roll, and hip hop have not only played a key role in the emergence of new social movements and alternative sensibilities and made possible the process of postwar Americanization and its affinities with youth and consumer culture; they also have allowed the culture industry to expand its global reach in close dialogue with new technological developments and forms of producing and consuming music. Not surprisingly, Germany since the 1950s has been continually shaped and reshaped by the sounds emanating from within and without that have further exploded the parameters of such interrogations. Writers and filmmakers have turned their attention to popular musical movements, the communities that engage in them, and the political and cultural forces that such movements challenge and call forth. As part of contemporary event culture, music (popular and classical) continues to redefine the artistic, social, cultural, and institutional frameworks that situate popular music at the intersection of the local and the global, the national and the transnational.

For information on the conference, see its website.

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