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Charles Mingus and the Paradoxical Aspects of Race as Reflected in His Life and Music

Horton, Ernest Aaron (2007) Charles Mingus and the Paradoxical Aspects of Race as Reflected in His Life and Music. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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Charles Mingus was a jazz icon who helped to redefine the barriers that were inherent for those whose artistic expression was labeled jazz. He was a master bassist in an expressive style that was forced to fight and claw its way to respectability; he crafted challenging and emotional performances in venues where the ring of the cash register competed with his music during performances; and he developed musical techniques that had an immediate impact on American music, though he was never invited to fill any academic post. These contradictions are all brought together in light of his status as a jazz icon. The term "jazz" represents a paradox because it is the word used to represent a musical style developed in the United States and closely, but not exclusively, tied to the African-American experience. This experience represents triumph, but it also represents many things that were painful and humiliating to all Americans. Any serious study of jazz must visit this paradox. Charles Mingus and the Paradoxical Aspects of Race as Reflected in His Life and Music examines these aspects of the history of jazz using specific parts of Mingus's life and by analyzing and comparing some of his works. This dissertation will also examine the social pressures under which Mingus lived and that gave his work direction, and how this direction was expressed in his work.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Horton, Ernest
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairDavis, Nathanndavis@pitt.eduNDAVIS
Committee MemberEuba, Akinaeuba@pitt.eduAEUBA
Committee MemberGlasco, Laurencelag1@pitt.eduLAG1
Committee MemberRosenblum, Mathewrosenblu@pitt.eduROSENBLU
Date: 21 June 2007
Date Type: Completion
Defense Date: 19 March 2007
Approval Date: 21 June 2007
Submission Date: 7 April 2007
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > Music
Degree: PhD - Doctor of Philosophy
Thesis Type: Doctoral Dissertation
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: African American; Black; Charles Mingus; composer; jazz; music
Other ID:, etd-04072007-140228
Date Deposited: 10 Nov 2011 19:34
Last Modified: 15 Nov 2016 13:38


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