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This dissertation probes the relationship between Pan-Americanism and musical production in its cultural and historic context through close analysis of the music, concert programming, and publications of the Pan-American Association of Composers. The PAAC presented concerts of new music from the Americas between 1928 and 1934 in New York City, Havana, and Europe. Purposeful diversity, or "collective difference," was the PAAC's strategy for approaching European audiences by collaborative force. The principle of collective difference describes both the stylistic diversity present on PAAC concerts and also the ultimate goal of that diversity, which was to reverse the flow of musical culture from west to east. Through social and cultural research, style analysis, and reception history, I demonstrate collective difference in the combinations of primitivist, nationalist, modernist, and neo-classical tendencies present in the PAAC repertory. In doing so, I reevaluate accepted nationalist discourses in the Americas from a transnational perspective and demonstrate how Pan-American musical creation arose organically from interactions between Mexican, Cuban, and U.S. composers. In the final chapter I explain literary and musical connections between African Americans and Latin Americans during the late 1930s. Here I examine four Latin American art songs that participated in the international movement of negritude, or blackness, and incorporated elements of jazz and blues. This chapter provides a necessary counterpoint to the PAAC's activities by emphasizing connections between African American and Latin American cultures, which circumvented the Anglo-American interpretation of Pan-Americanism that the PAAC espoused.
Blues, Henry Cowell, Langston Hughes, Nicolas Slonimsky, Pan-American Association of Composers, Carlos Chávez, Silvestre Revueltas, Edgard Varèse
Date of Defense
April 20, 2009.
A Dissertation Submitted to the College of Music in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy.
Includes bibliographical references.
Florida State University
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