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Defining twentieth-and twenty-first century music

Lookup NU author(s): Professor David ClarkeORCiD



This is the authors' accepted manuscript of an article that has been published in its final definitive form by Cambridge University Press, 2017.

For re-use rights please refer to the publisher's terms and conditions.


What do we mean by ‘twentieth-century music’? And how are we to square this with the musics of a twenty-first century that is now nearing the end of its second decade? These and other questions are salient for a journal that identifies the former century in its title yet regards the latter as equally within its remit. Just how are we to think the two centuries together? Should we consider the music of the twenty-first century as a continuation of tendencies from the late twentieth? Or are there tendencies within musical production and consumption that have a definitively twenty-first-century character and so mark out the beginning of a new era? If so, when and with what, iconically speaking, did the twenty-first century beginand the twentieth end? Or do these historiographic categories even continue to have currency? This discussion forum explores these questions (and others) with contributions from authors from a range of disciplinary and sub-disciplinary perspectives, from a diversity of geographic and person subject positions, and arguing in relation to a range of musical styles and genres.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Clarke D, Lochhead J, Metzer D, Griffiths D, Nooshin L, Rollefson G, Yang HL, Mugovhani NG, Piekut B, Lewis GE, Toop D, Manabe N, Redgate R, Thompson M

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Twentieth-Century Music

Year: 2017

Volume: 14

Issue: 3

Pages: 411-462

Online publication date: 08/01/2018

Acceptance date: 22/06/2017

Date deposited: 16/01/2018

ISSN (print): 1478-5722

ISSN (electronic): 1478-5730

Publisher: Cambridge University Press


DOI: 10.1017/S1478572217000342


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