Latin American Art Music in the Music History Curriculum: Taking Stock in the United States

Carol A. Hess


This essay surveys the teaching of Latin American art music in U.S. post-secondary education from the 1930s to the present. After a rush of enthusiasm during the Good Neighbor period (World War II), decades of indifference set in. After 2000, an increasing number of instructors began either (1) teaching the art music of Latin America in courses dedicated to all types of Latin America music or (2) incorporating the subject into existing courses on Western art music. Yet many instructors still omit Latin American art music, as do certain authors. In this essay, I question such a stance. Not only does Latin American art music offer a window into Latin American culture but it can help counteract persistent stereotypes about Latin America, a perspective that is all the more critical in light of recent demographic trends in the United States and recent political developments.

Parole chiave

Latin American classical music; Representation; Music curricula and demographics in the United States

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DOI: 10.6092/issn.2039-9715/6570

Copyright (c) 2016 Carol A. Hess

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