Musicology Furman University

Musicology is defined as the scholarly study of music. In the Middle Ages, music was classified among the seven liberal arts, those tools of thought considered essential to the formation of the free intellect. Musicology takes on that mantle of scholarly discipline and allows you to engage in intensive study of historical, theoretical, social, and aesthetic questions. It knits together the whole musical experience, giving you the academic skills you need for a lifetime of learning and communication. At Furman, musicology courses are essential components of each of our five music degrees, both as requirements and electives. Several courses are available to majors and non-majors in fulfillment of the general education requirements.

Course offerings

MUS-101 Introduction to Music
GER: VP (Visual and Performing Arts)


Introduction to the fundamentals of music, exploring a variety of musical genres, and developing an appreciation of the diverse musical genres. Although the focus for each section varies, all sections address certain fundamentals of music: listening skills, cultural context, historical development, musical vocabulary, musical structure, and style. Requires out-of-class listening and attendance at live concerts. 4 credits.

MUS-102 Introduction to Jazz
GER: VP (Visual and Performing Arts)


Historical overview of the development of jazz. Intended for non-music majors. Includes the study of significant artists and their recordings in a social and historical context. 4 credits.

MUS-120 Introduction to Music Literature
Prerequisite: MUS-111


Exploration of important composers and works, topics will include: recurring cycles of classicism and romanticism, performance practice, sacredness in music, the nature of creativity, translations of vocal music and the changing roles of the composer, performer and audience in society. 2 credits.

MUS-220 World Music I
GER: WC (World Cultures)
Prerequisite: MUS-211


Examination of music from selected regions of the world. Emphasis on understanding the culture, meaning, and identities found in music outside the western European paradigm. 4 credits.

MUS-221 Music History I
Prerequisite: MUS-112


The development of musical style, covering the period from Antiquity to c. 1650. Representative examples of music are discussed, with an emphasis on social-historical context and the philosophical origins of Western music. 2 credits.

MUS-320 Music History II
GER: HA (Historical Analysis of Human Interactions)
Prerequisite: MUS-212 and 221


Stylistic development of Western European art music within the broader context of European history. It will also explore the relationship of music history to other forms of historical inquiry. 4 credits.

MUS-321 Music History III
Prerequisite: MUS-212


A survey of the development of musical style from ca. 1890 to the present. Representative musical examples are heard, studied and discussed, with an emphasis on social-historical context. 2 credits.

MUS-322 Music Literature Topics: Italian Madrigals
Prerequisite: MUS-212


A study of the genre of the Italian madrigal as it developed in the 16th and 17th centuries. Development of the polyphonic madrigal in the Renaissance through the Seconda Prattica at the turn of the 17th century and the rise of the concerted madrigal of the early Baroque period. 2 credits.

MUS-328 Introduction to Music Research
Prerequisite: MUS-212


An introduction to the methods and standard resources of music scholarship. Emphasis will be on primary sources, research tools, and evaluation strategies. 2 credits.

MUS-341 Hymnology
Prerequisite: MUS-212


Survey of major developments in hymnody — both hymn texts and hymn tunes — from the early Christian era to the present. 2 credits.

MUS-381 American Music Before WWI

Available spring 2013. 2 credits.

MUS-420 Literature of the Instrument
Prerequisite: MUS-212


Survey of the musical literature of a particular performance area. Students (typically performance majors) channel their research and study toward their own performance specialty and survey the general body of compositions written for that medium. 2 credits.

MUS-421 History & Literature of the Piano
Prerequisite: MUS-310


The development of the piano and a survey of the music written for it. Topics include: music written originally for harpsichord and clavichord as well as recent developments in electronic keyboard and computer technology. 4 credits.

MUS-422 History & Literature of the Organ
Prerequisite: MUS-310


The development of the organ and a survey of organ music. Topics include: characteristics of organs in specific countries and historical periods, and performance practices associated with specific schools and composers. 2 credits.
 
MUS-423 Survey of Choral Literature
Prerequisite: MUS-212


Choral literature, both sacred and secular, beginning with Gregorian Chant and concluding with choral-orchestral music of the 20th and 21st century will be discussed, analyzed, and heard. 2 credits.

MUS-424 Beethoven's Ninth: Before and After
Prerequisite: MUS-101 or 120 and the ability to read music


Beethoven's Ninth Symphony was recognized as a landmark work even before its first performance in 1824. In the decades following its influence was keenly felt by every composer contemplating writing a symphony. This course will use a seminar format to study Beethoven's most influential work and its aftermath. May Experience ONLY. 2 credits.
 
MUS-427 Opera Overload
Prerequisite: MUS-101 or 120 and the ability to read music


Opportunity to intensively study several complete operas. Students will prepare a variety of readings and watch video performances as a group of operas to become the basis of seminar discussions. Students will prepare a final presentation and paper on a topic to be selected in collaboration with the instructor. May Experience ONLY. 2 credits.

MUS-428 Impressionism in France

A detailed study of Debussy and Ravel: influences by their impressionistic colleagues in the art world (Monet, Renoir, Degas, Manet) and their collaborations with poets Verlaine, Mallarme, Baudelaire, Rimbaud. May Experience ONLY. 2 credits.

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