Songs of Social Protest is a comprehensive, cutting-edge companion guide to music and social protest globally. Bringing together established and emerging scholars from a range of fields, it explores a wide range of examples of, and contexts for, songs and their performance that have been deployed as part of local, regional and global social protest movements, both in historical and contemporary times. Topics covered include:
- African American Music
- Community & Collective Movements
- Counter-hegemonic Discourses
- Critical Pedagogy
- Folk Music
- Popular Culture
Encompassing nuanced historical-political-economic contextualizations and detailed ethnographic, socio-musicological analysis, this comprehensive book offers new and critical perspectives on genres already associated with protest alongside explorations of rich music traditions which may not be readily familiar to Western readers interested in protest movements and song. By placing historical approaches alongside cutting-edge ethnography, philosophical excursions alongside socio-political and economic perspectives, and cultural context alongside detailed, musicological, textual, and performance analysis, Songs of Social Protest offers a dynamic resource for scholars and students exploring song and singing as a form of protest.
Foreword: Dave Randall / Introduction: Stand Up, Sing Out: The Contemporary Relevance of Protest Song (Aileen Dillane, Martin J. Power, Amanda Haynes and Eoin Devereux) / Part I: Protest and the African-American Experience / Chapter 1: Social Protest and Resistance in African American Song: Traditions in Transformation (Robert W. Stephens and Mary Ellen Junda) / Chapter 2: “You’ll Never Hear Kumbaya the Same Way Again”: The Diffusion and Defusion of a Freedom Song (Robbie Lieberman) / Chapter 3: Billie Holiday’s Popular Front Songs of Protest (Jonathon Bakan) / Part II: Protest Genealogies / Chapter 4: Songs of Social Protest, Then and Now (William F. Danaher) / Chapter 5: Pete Seeger and the Politics of Participation (Rob Rosenthal) / Chapter 6: The Radicalisation of Phil Ochs, the Radicalisation of the Sixties (Anthony Ashbolt) / Chapter 7: Ewan McColl’s Radio Ballads as Songs of Social Protest (Matthew Ord) / Chapter 8: ‘Message Songs are A Drag’: Bob Dylan Protesting Too Much? (Joseph O’Connor) / Part III: Transforming Traditions / Chapter 9: Expressions of Māʻohi-ness in Contemporary Tahitian Popular Music (Geoffroy Colson) / Chapter 10: Casteism and Cultural Capital: Social and Spiritual Reform through Kabir-Singing in North India (Vivek Virani) / Chapter 11: Singing Against the Empire: Anti-structure and Anti-colonial Discourse in Nineteenth-century Irish Song (Tríona Ní Shíocháin) / Part IV: Freedom and Autonomy / Chapter 12: “Organic Intellectuals”: The Role of Protest Singers in the Overthrowing of the Portuguese Dictatorship, 1926-1974 (Isabel David) / Chapter 13: Singing Protest in Post-war Italy: Fabrizio De André’s Songs Within the Context of Italian Canzone d’Autore (Riccardo Orlandi) / Chapter 14: The Trajectory of Protest Song from Dictatorship to Democracy and the Independence Movement in Catalonia: Lluís Llach and the Catalan Nova Cançó (Nuria Borrull) / Chapter 15: Making the Everyday Political: The Case of Janāpādā Geyalu [Folk Songs] as Protest Songs in the Telangana State Formation Movement in India (Rahul Sambaraju) / Part V: Politics, Participation and Activism in the Field / Chapter 16: “Freedom is a Constant Struggle”: Performance and Regeneration Amidst Social Movement Decline (Omotayo Jolaosho) / Chapter 17: Cultural Production as a Political Act: Two Feminist Songs from Istanbul (Evrim Hikmet Öğüt) / Chapter 18: Hip Hop as Civil Society: Activism and Escapism in Uganda’s Hip Hop Scene (Simran Singh-Grewal) / Part VI: Semiotics, Mediation and Manipulation / Chapter 19: BOOM! Goes the Global Protest Movement: Heavy Metal, Protest, and the Televisual in System of a Down’s “Boom!” Music Video (Clare Neil King) / Chapter 20: Pussy Riot: Performing “Punkness,” or Taking the “Riot” out of “Riot Grrrl” (Julianne Graper) / Chapter 21: Camp Fascism: The Tyranny of the Beat (Tiffany Naiman) / Chapter 22: Protest Songs, Social Media and the Exploitation of Syrian Children (Guilnard Moufarrej) / Part VII: Protesting Bodies and Embodiment / Chapter 23: “Bread and Roses”: A Song of Social Protest or Hollowed Out Resistance? (Gwen Moore) / Chapter 24: “We Shall Overcome”: Communal Participation and Entrainment in a Protest Song (Thérèse Smith) / Part VIII: Borderlands and Contested Spaces / Chapter 25: The Language We Use: Representations of Morrissey as a Figure of Protest in Queer Latino Los Angeles (Melissa Hidalgo) / Chapter 26: Rising from the Ashes of “The Grove”: The Efficacy and Aesthetics of Protest Songs Represented in Ry Cooder’s Chávez Ravine (Donnacha M. Toomey) / Chapter 27: Mariem Hassan, Nubenegna Records and The Western Saharawi Struggle (Luis Giminez Amoros) / Part IX: Critiquing Capitalism and the Neoliberal Tide / Chapter 28: Against the Grain: Counter-Hegemonic Representations of Pre and Post ‘Celtic-Tiger’ Ireland in the ‘Protest’ Songs of Damien Dempsey (Aileen Dillane, Martin J. Power, Eoin Deverux and Amanda Haynes) / Chapter 29: Bail Out – From Now to Never – A Rhetorical Analysis of Two Songs About Economic Crisis (Michael Hajimichael) / Chapter 30: The Cacophony of Critique: New Model Army’s Protest Against Neo-Liberal Critique (Tom Boland) / Part X: Ideology and the Performer / Chapter 31: “Aesthetics of resistance”: Billy Bragg, Ideology and the Longevity of Song as Social Protest (Martin J Power) / Chapter 32: Straight to Hell: The Clash and the Politics of Left Melancholia (Colin Coulter) / Chapter 33: The Truth Must Be Told So I’ll Tell It: Social Protest and the Folk Song in the Music of Christy Moore (Kieran Cashell) / Discography/Filmography / Bibliography / Index
From the outset the coverage of Songs of Social Protest is exciting and comprehensive. It brings to life the social, cultural and personal engagement of popular music across genres and historical periods. The book evokes the power of social struggle and the passion of musical artists who want to change the social world.
Music has a unique power. But why and how can music develop such an energy that public articulation of protest is almost unthinkable without it? Whether American 1960s folk music or Indian activist movements in the new millenium – this unique collection dissects the interconnections of music and political articulation from any possible perspetive. The findings are globally more relevant than ever.
To hear the songs of social protest in this remarkable volume is to discover renewed purpose in a world whose ideals are now at greatest risk. These are the songs of local struggle and the voices of the global collective, calling us to action and sounding the ways to endow music with power in our own day and beyond.
Songs of Social Protest is unprecedented in its international and multidisciplinary scope. It questions any single definition of the protest song, considering sound and performance as well as lyrics. It grounds the agency of songs in social movements, organizations, socialism, feminism and the politics of self-determination. Anyone asking the question ‘Where have all the protest songs gone?’ should start here.
Aileen Dillane is a Lecturer at the Irish World Academy of Music and Dance, University of Limerick, Ireland.
Martin J Power is a Lecturer in Sociology at the University of Limerick, Ireland.
Eoin Devereux is a Professor of Sociology at the University of Limerick, Ireland.
Amanda Haynes is a Senior Lecturer in Sociology at the University of Limerick.