What Is Ethnomusicology? - Video

Ethnomusicology, which is a branch of musicology, is the study of music from all over the world. Ethnomusicologists focus on the anthropology of music. Many become musicians themselves to get a better understanding of music and the people who play it. Learn more about a career in Ethnomusicology here.

Ethnomusicology Overview

Ethnomusicology is the academic study of music. Ethnomusicology students, or Ethnomusicologists, as they are also known investigate the meaning of music in culture and society. They seek to understand how it is used in politics, education and everyday life. Although some Ethnomusicologists do specialize in a particular type of music, most study music from around the world.

As part of their study, they often interact with musicians and listeners to learn more about the beliefs and ideas behind music and the people who enjoy it. It is not unusual for Ethnomusicologists to travel the world and immerse themselves in a particular culture. In fact, fieldwork is very important in Ethnomusicology. It gives Ethnomusicologists a chance to perform a personal analysis of art, creativity and society. Fieldwork also provides the opportunity to conduct interviews and document information about the impact of music on people and culture.

Careers in Ethnomusicology

Most Ethnomusicologists work as professors for colleges, universities and other academic institutions. However, there are a number of professionals who find employment through museums or libraries. These Ethnomusicologists conduct research, create exhibits and develop public education programs. Job opportunities can also be found in the music industry, which always has a need for consultants and performers.

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