music as social action ::
We'll conclude our coursework this week with a final discussion about the Occupy Wall Street movement and the music that infused those protests — or, in most cases, didn't. For some extra background on the movement and its connections to previous social actions, this article offers a well-written history.
We'll talk about the drum circles at Occupy and link them to other discussions we've had about wordless musical contributions to social protest. We won't, however, get to another element of Occupy's particular modes of communication that is worth considering in connection to our examinations of music: the human microphone, a tactic in which audience members repeat the words of a speaker in waves through a crowd, "amplifying" the speaker when no electronic PA system is present. It's a creative strategy that facilitates large assemblies and contributes to their mobility. See some post-Occupy examples of its use here.
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