Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Gender roles in the violin music of Bach
by Barton, Pamela Sage, M.M., California State University, Long Beach, 2016, 29; 10111173
Abstract (Summary)

In Johann Sebastian Bach’s Partita No. 3 in E Major BWV 1006, French societal values for gender roles can be found. This report examines such ideals from the perspective of gender and sexuality and the ways it represents power, politics, and human expression. I will observe various Bach and feminist scholars such as Susan McClary and apply their analysis to gender roles in the Baroque era. I will also use analysis of Bach’s Partita No. 3 to critique these gender roles and to further develop the concept of women’s role in music, thus informing my own interpretation of the piece for my recital performance. These gender roles during the Bach’s time reveal women to be limited to mainly the domestic sphere. Ultimately this domestic role reinforces the patriarchal foundation of music.

By including female roles in the academic discussion of Bach’s music, inclusivity is achieved. There is a great deal of research available on gender roles during the Baroque era suggesting that some women were involved in music but were ultimately restricted by the patriarchy. Women and their roles are studied but are often portrayed as an exception, an afterthought, or a side-note within the male narrative. If music is regarded as a medium of expression and freedom, it seems only fair to recognize those who faced oppression in order to uphold music’s transcendent and progressive properties. By investigating their roles I intend to broaden historical significance where it is due.

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Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Simeonov, Moni
Commitee: Brown, Richard, Muller-Stosch, Johannes
School: California State University, Long Beach
Department: Bob Cole Conservatory of Music
School Location: United States -- California
Source: MAI 55/05M(E), Masters Abstracts International
Subjects: Music
Publication Number: 10111173
ISBN: 978-1-339-74383-7
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