Some Remarks on the Epistemological Bases for a Musicology of Popular Music

Vincenzo Caporaletti


This article aims firstly to test the musicological resilience, and possibly probe the limits, of the epistemological field identified by the notion of “popular music” as an object of study. Starting with an examination of the nomothetic value of this formula, it will therefore discuss the conditions of feasibility of this field as an autonomous and distinct entity within the topology of musical experiences and systems. Secondly, it aims to explore the epistemic consistency and methodological effectiveness of the academic disciplines that are proposed as the privileged,
if not exclusive, instruments of study of this field. The critical orientations that coalesce in “popular music studies” and in the more recent “popular musicology” will thus be verified as to their academic assumptions and their heuristic potential in relation to traditional musicological and ethnomusicological disciplines. This analysis will highlight critical factors for which appropriate research indications will be provided.

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Copyright (c) 2016 Vincenzo Caporaletti

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