Genres & Composers A
Genres & Composers A 2023-24
School Of Arts, Culture And Language
Module - Semester 1
There are two Genres & Composers modules offered in each semester: A (year 2) and C (year 3) in semester 1, and B (year 2) and D (year 3) in semester 2. Normally one topic is offered in each semester. The topic varies from year to year.
The following list is indicative of the variety of topics that have been recently offered across Genres & Composers A and C (semester 1) and B and D (semester 2).
- Beethoven and the String Quartet
- Cage and Experimental Music
- Debussy and Ravel
- From Dufay to Josquin
- Michael Nyman
- Music and Censorship
- Music Revivals
- Opera: Monteverdi to Mozart
- The Beatles
- The 19th-Century Symphony
- The 20th-Century Symphony
- Three Contemporary Welsh Composers: Metcalfe, Samuel and Barrett
- Tonality Today
- The Violin in World Culture
The topics vary from year to year. Typically the module will begin with an introduction to the topic, followed by a detailed exploration of aspects within it, supported by contextual reading / listening and interpretations. The exact syllabus will change depending on the topic, but will typically include aspects such as: - contemporary cultural contexts - understanding the associated musical texts (and contexts) - reception - critique
Third Class: D- to D+ (40%–49%) The crucial achievement is demonstration of a basic grasp of what the topic is about, and the sort of material involved. However, the mark will be limited to this level by such things as: mere repetition of information without demonstration of real understanding; confusion of argument which indicates a failure to properly understand the material; inability to distinguish the relevant from the irrelevant; inability to grasp ideas; inclusion of factual errors; seriously defective bibliographical or footnoting skills; poor expression; oral reticence; scrappy presentation.
Lower Second Class: C- to C+ (50%–59%) The main quality which warrants marks in this category is the amassing of a reasonable body of relevant material drawn from a fairly wide range of reading or other forms of information retrieval, sorted into a coherent order and expressed intelligibly. Qualities which limit the mark to this level are: incoherent arguments, or argument which is defective in some way; limited or defective bibliography or footnotes; limited understanding of ideas or argument; limited evidence of a broad knowledge and understanding of the topic; limited engagement with negotiating and renegotiating ideas in oral discussion; limited evidence of serious thought, as opposed to straightforward diligence.
Upper Second Class: B- to B+ (60%–69%) The distinguishing quality is the ability to construct focused argument which is properly evidenced. The work will therefore probably demonstrate the ability to understand the discussion of a work of art and to apply that knowledge to different works; the conveyance of a general knowledge and understanding of the topic as a whole, and of a more detailed knowledge and understanding of specific areas; competent bibliographical and footnoting skills; effective communication of ideas and argument; ability to see problems and contradictions within source reading; thoughtful contribution to oral discussion; skills in observation and analysis. Upper Second Class work may contain many of the same qualities which apply in First Class work, but they will be demonstrated at a less independent level, or the work may be outstanding in one First-class characteristic but significantly deficient in another.
First Class: A- and A (70%–83%) The distinguishing quality is evidence of real intellectual and independent thought in a sustained discussion. Work at this level will probably demonstrate initiative in carrying out research beyond the obvious sources; ability to evaluate critically sources used; sustained and coherent discussion; articulate expression in speaking and writing; ability to bring together material from disparate sources; observational and analytical skills of a high order; the ability to employ knowledge to illuminate musical texts; indications of wide knowledge beyond the narrow confines of the topic addressed; the ability to lead oral discussion; ability to identify and rigorously confront problems in the topic, contradictions in texts, or lacunae in available evidence.
First Class: A+ to A** (84%–100%) Work at this level is highly original and of a standard that attains or closely approaches professional standards. The work will demonstrate in a consistent manner all of the features listed in the A-/A (70%-83%) category, and will be of such a quality that it either stands up to publication or broadcast in its submitted state or has the potential for publication or broadcast with presentational amendments.
- Apply skills of musical analysis, source-based research, and critical thinking in relation to the music studied.
- Communicate ideas about the music studied effectively.
- Demonstrate and apply a detailed knowledge and understanding of specific subjects in music history and culture.
Presentation: these are to be given during the semester in the seminars on a date agreed with the module tutor. Your presentation will allow you to demonstrate critical engagement with one element of the topic studied.
Essay: a list of questions will be given in the module handbook, available from the start of the semester. The questions will allow you to demonstrate your engagement with and understanding of the wider topic, and related scholarly literature. The essay is due on the first day of the assessment period (i.e. Monday of week 13).