Music is often our companion when dealing with the incomprehensibility of loss, and yet death and dying are topics that are rarely discussed or analysed in the academic space, especially in combination with music studies. This edited collection examines several ways in which diverse music cultures and societies imagine, express and provide a means of coping with death, grief and remembrance. Written from a variety of interdisciplinary perspectives, including both personal essays and academic studies, the nine chapters are divided into three subsections focusing respectively on mourning, underground scenes, and performance. The authors speak to the multifarious and complex ways in which music accompanies, supplements, and complements aspects of death and dying, whether this is the death of a loved one, or a celebrity from popular culture. The book cuts across disciplines such as musicology, death studies, funeral studies, cultural studies, media studies, celebrity studies, sociology, anthropology and theology, and includes perspectives from Australia, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, the United Kingdom and the United States.
Section One. Music and Mourning Chapter 1. Funeral Music Between Heaven and Earth; Janieke Bruin-Mollenhorst Chapter 2. On the Funeral and Bereavement Rituals Depicted in Folk Songs: 'The Folk Requiem' by Adam Strug and Kwadrofonik; Marek Jeziński Chapter 3. The Posthumous Nephew: An Auto-ethnographic Exploration of Belated Mourning and Fresh Divinations; Gary Levy Section Two. Underground Scenes, Alternative Music and Transformation Chapter 4. You're Nothing: Punk and Death; David Gracon Chapter 5. Healing the Mother Wound: Metal Performance and Grief Management; Nachthexe Chapter 6. Bienvenue au Canada: The Nonlanguage of Music and Dreams; Brendan Dabkowski Section Three. Performing Death Chapter 7. The Vision of Death: Time and Temporality; Sílvia Mendonça Chapter 8. Music and Embodied Movement: Representations of Risk and Death in Contemporary Circus; Jenny Game-Lopata Chapter 9. Mercury's Message to Go On With the Show; Marie Josephine Bennett
Marie Josephine Bennett is a PhD candidate in the Faculty of Arts at the University of Winchester, UK. Her major areas of interest and research are Hollywood film musicals, music in films, queer studies, celebrity studies, popular music of the 1960s-1980s, and the Eurovision Song Contest. David Gracon is an Assistant Professor of Media Studies and Digital Production at Gonzaga University in the Department of Integrated Media. He has been invested in post-punk, indie, experimental music scenes, zine communities and college radio, as well as activist-orientated experimental film, video and documentary communities and collectives since the mid-1990s.