[Dixielandjazz] Jazz Dissertation

James Kashishian kash at ran.es
Thu Jul 22 10:00:00 PDT 2004

My two youngest sons (twins) are busy writing their Master's Dissertations
in London at the moment, one at University College, London...the other at
London School of Economics.  

My son that is at LSE accidentally ran into a Ph.D. dissertation written at
City University, London, by someone called Catherine Parsonage while
researching his own paper.  This dissertation is on Jazz History (which
makes me wonder what my son was doing straying so far from his given
subject...relaxing a bit, I suppose!!).  

It is quite long, but I have it in an attachment, if anyone is interested.


Here's the abstract:

A critical reassessment of the
reception of early jazz in Britain



The Original Dixieland Jazz Band's visit in 1919-1920 has been well
documented as the beginning of jazz in Britain. This article illuminates a
more complex evolution of the image and presence of jazz in Britain through
consideration of the cultural and musical antecedents of the genre,
including minstrel shows and black musical theatre, within the context of
musical life in Britain in the late nineteenth to early twentieth centuries.
The processes through which this evolution took place are considered with
reference to the ways in which jazz was introduced to Britain through
imported revue shows and sheet music.
It is an extremely significant but often neglected fact that another group
of American musicians, Will Marion Cook's Southern Syncopated Orchestra,
also came to Britain in 1919. Remarkably, extensive comparisons of the
respective performances and reception of the ODJB and the SSO have not been
made in the available literature on jazz. Examination of the situation of
one white and one black group of American musicians performing
contemporaneously in London is extremely informative, as it evidences the
continuing influence of the antecedents of jazz and the importance of both
groups in shaping perceptions of jazz in Britain.

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