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Introduction to Ethnic Music - African
MUS 166-001

Dr. Rob Bridge

OFFICE HOURS: Posted on my door and on the web

COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course is a study of African music and its influence on other cultures (specifically those of the African Diaspora). There are no prerequisites.

Course Learning Outcomes

1. Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the distinctive features of at least one non-Western culture
2. Demonstrate an understanding of the interplay of the economic, political and social institutions between at least one non-Western culture and Western societies

Understand pertinent historical and cultural contexts; Analyze the relationships (and tensions) between oral and written culture; Investigate the uses of improvisation in both music and literary texts; Discuss polyrhythms, polyphony, multiple voices, community, and the ongoing conversation with the ancestors; Interrogate the participation of non-blacks in the black aesthetic; Explore issues related to plagiarism and sampling: authorship, ownership, copyright, and fair use;


African Rhythm and African Sensibility, John Miller Chernoff


Papers: All assignments are expected on the date they are due. However, under extenuating circumstances, you may turn in work one class session after the due date with no penalty.

Listening: Listening assignments can be completed on Black Board. Please allow yourself time each week to prepare the necessary listening assignments.

Black Board Assignments: have clear deadlines. There is a slight grace period after each assignment. Late work will be penalized.  When the assignment closes, it cannot re-open.

Grading Procedure: Grades are divided into homework, quizzes and tests.

Homework & Quizzes 50%
Exams/Papers 50%

Attendance: Perfect attendance will add 5 points to your final grade. Attendance is taken at the beginning of each class. If you are tardy, you must see me at the end of class to be marked in attendance. 3 late arrivals will be counted as one absence.

Office Hours: will be posted on my door, on the web, and can also be arranged by appointment. Please feel free to contact me about any class related issues. I am also very good about checking e-mail (see address above.)

NOTE: The Tutoring Center is open every day (M-F). Most students think of the Center as a place to go only when they are having some problem with their writing, but in fact, professional tutors can help you at any step in the writing process from the brainstorming stage (before you ever set pen to paper) to the editing stage of the very final, final draft.

RECOMMENDATIONS: If you need a letter of recommendation at some point in the future, please set up an appointment to come discuss the letter with either or both of us so that the letter can be tailored to your specific needs and purposes. Also be sure to allow plenty of lead time, and try to avoid "crunch" periods--e.g., at mid-semester and during the last 2 weeks of class.

Anyone with special learning needs, please be sure to let me know immediately and bring me copies of your paperwork from the OSSN.

Reading Assignments
Listening Area

Dr. Robert Bridge