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  • Acknowledgments vii

    Introduction: The Jazz Canon and Its Consequences / Krin Gabbard 1

    Rethinking Jazz History

    "Moldy Figs" and Modernists: Jazz at War (1942–1946) / Bernard Gendron 31

    Jazz in Crisis, 1948–1958: Ideology and Representation / Steven B. Elworth 57

    Other: From Noun to Verb / Nathaniel Mackey 76

    Historical Context and the Definition of Jazz: Putting More of the History in "Jazz History" / William Howland Kenney 100

    Oral Histories of Jazz Musicians: The NEA Transcripts as Texts in Context / Burton W. Peretti 117

    The Media of Memory: The Seductive Menace of Records in Jazz History / Jed Rasula 134

    Jazz Artists Among the Discourses

    "Out of Notes": Signification, Interpretation, and the Problem of Miles Davis / Robert Walser 165

    Critical Alchemy: Anthony Braxton and the Imagined Tradition / Ronald M. Radano 189

    Ephemera Underscored: Writing Around Free Improvisation / John Corbett 217

    The Essential Context: Jazz and Politics

    Double V, Double-Time: Bebop's Politics of Style / Eric Lott 243

    Ascension: Music and the Black Arts Movement / Lorenzo Thomas 256

    Contributors 275

    Index 277
  • Krin Gabbard

    Bernard L. Gendron

    Steven B. Elworth

    Nathaniel Mackey

    Burton W. Peretti

    Jed Rasula

    Robert Walser

    Ronald Radano

    John Corbett

    Eric Lott

  • "A most valuable and engrossing book that will surely be read by all those who write about jazz. Fans will also seek it out. It offers a wealth of perspectives, allowing the reader to learn what people in other disciplines have to say about jazz."—Lewis Porter, author, with Michael Ullman, of Jazz: From Its Origins to the Present — N/A

    "A remarkable variety of voices and perspectives, and yet the overall thrust of the collection—to establish the groundwork on which a field of jazz studies could be founded—is quite clear. Jazz Among the Discourses will have an obvious impact on musicology, simply because nothing like it has ever been attempted."—Scott DeVeaux, University of Virginia — N/A

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  • Description

    The study of jazz comes of age with this anthology. One of the first books to consider jazz outside of established critical modes, Jazz Among the Discourses brings together scholars from an array of disciplines to question and revise conventional methods of writing and thinking about jazz.
    Challenging "official jazz histories," the contributors to this volume view jazz through the lenses of comparative literature; African American studies; music, film, and communication theory; English literature; American studies; history; and philosophy. With uncommon rigor and imagination, their essays probe the influence of various discourses—journalism, scholarship, politics, oral history, and entertainment—on writing about jazz. Employing modes of criticism and theory that have transformed study in the humanities, they address questions seldom if ever raised in jazz writing: What are the implications of building jazz history around the medium of the phonograph record? Why did jazz writers first make the claim that jazz is an art? How is an African American aesthetic articulated through the music? What are the consequences of the interaction between the critic and the jazz artist? How does the improvising artist navigate between chaos and discipline?
    Along with its companion volume, Representing Jazz, this versatile anthology marks the arrival of jazz studies as a mature, intellectually independent discipline. Its rethinking of conventional jazz discourse will further strengthen the position of jazz studies within the academy.

    Contributors. John Corbett, Steven B. Elworth, Krin Gabbard, Bernard Gendron, William Howland Kenney, Eric Lott, Nathaniel Mackey, Burton Peretti, Ronald M. Radano, Jed Rasula, Lorenzo Thomas, Robert Walser

    About The Author(s)

    Krin Gabbard is Associate Professor of Comparative Literature at the State University of New York, Stony Brook. He is the editor of the companion volume, Representing Jazz, also published by Duke University Press.

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