bill roy comments on lena’s banding together

Bill Roy has given me permission to post his comments on Jenn Lena’s Banding Together. These comments were delivered at an Author Meets Critics session last fall. From the notes:

This is the best book yet for developing a sociology of genres and connecting the sociology of genres to the broader sociology of classification and boundaries.  It synthesizes an awesome amount of material and develops a coherent, systematic model of popular music genres.  It not only shows keen insight into particular genres, as most of the work on genres aspires to do, but more impressively analyzes the entire terrain of genres, laying out what they have in common and developing a fertile topology of genres.  Perhaps most fruitful for general sociological understanding of classificatory systems is an ideal-typical trajectory of genre development, though being an empirically sensitive scholar, she examines, and more importantly, seeks to explain, why some genres fit the trajectory or deviate from it.

Click here, to read Roy’s entire comments on Banding Together.

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Written by fabiorojas

April 3, 2012 at 12:02 am

Posted in books, culture, fabio, sociology

2 Responses

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  1. Bill’s comments–and those of the other panelists at the Social Science History Association session (Denise Bielby, Mark Anthony Neal and Michael P. Jeffries)–are both laudatory and challenging; an ideal combination for a new author. (I have already expressed to them my appreciation, but I’m glad to have another opportunity now, to say thank you!) What was not ideal, however, was the amount of time we had to talk about them.

    Assuming that Bill shared his text with us in order that we discuss his ideas (and Fabio had the same motivation), I want to ask a question: What “counts” as an etic or emic account? My model of genre types and trajectories is built from primary and secondary data sources including histories of musical communities written by eyewitness observers, musicians, journalists, historians, musicologists, fans, and sociologists. Is a social form built from the accumulation of patterns in these diverse accounts etic or emic, and why?


    Jenn Lena

    April 3, 2012 at 7:18 pm

  2. […] discussion of Banding Together: Part 1, Bill Roy’s comments, Brayden’s […]


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