Music History

The concentrations in music history on the master's level and in musicology on the doctoral level are designed for those students interested in research, writing and teaching. Students pursuing one of these concentrations receive much individual attention and are encouraged to sharpen their critical thinking, refine their writing skills and apply a Christian perspective to the world of music.

Master of Music with Music History Concentration Highlights

  • Six courses in specialized areas of music history and musicology
  • music theory elective
  • thesis
Thesis Requirement

For the thesis, the student explores a historical aspect of sacred music. At Southwestern, topics have ranged from Renaissance masses and the oratorios of Carissimi to the motets of Bruckner and the Sacred Concerts of Duke Ellington. The student makes a contribution to knowledge in the field and gains practical experience in research methodology, the critical evaluation of sources and the logical, articulate presentation of findings.

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Ph.D. with Musicology Concentration Highlights

  • seminars in musicology
  • seminars in music theory and church music
  • dissertation
Dissertation Requirement

In the dissertation, the student focuses on working with primary sources and making original contributions to the discipline. Topics may include a combination of archival, historical, cultural and analytical approaches. Dissertations completed at Southwestern include:

  • "Sorrow, Death, and Musical Rhetoric in the Sacred Works of Carlo Gesualdo"
  • "The Portuguese Royal Court and the Patronage of Sacred Music in Rio de Janeiro, 1808-1821"
  • "Sacred Praise: Thomas Hastings and the Reform of Sacred Music in the Nineteenth-Century"

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