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Nettl's Elephant
by Bruno Nettl
foreword by Anthony Seeger
University of Illinois Press, 2010
Cloth: 978-0-252-03552-4 | eISBN: 978-0-252-09023-3 | Paper: 978-0-252-07742-5
Library of Congress Classification ML3799.N38 2010
Dewey Decimal Classification 780.89


From one of the most lauded scholars in ethnomusicology comes this enlightening and highly personal narrative on the evolution and current state of the field of ethnomusicology. Surveying the field he helped establish, Bruno Nettl investigates how concepts such as evolution, geography, and history serve as catalysts for advancing ethnomusicological methods and perspectives.


This entertaining collection covers Nettl's scholarly interests ranging from Native American to Mediterranean to Middle Eastern contexts while laying out the pivotal moments of the field and conversations with the giants of its past. Nettl moves from reflections on the history of ethnomusicology to evaluations of the principal organizations in the field, interspersing those broader discussions with shorter essays focusing on neglected literature and personal experiences.

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