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November 5, 2019 | 12:30 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.
Category: Lecture
Location: Faculty/Administration #2339 | Map
656 W. Kirby
Detroit, MI 48202
Cost: Free
Audience: Academic Staff, Alumni, Community, Current Graduate Students, Current Undergraduate Students, Faculty

The Humanities Center is proud to present as a part of its Brown Bag Colloquium Series, a talk by Jack Blaszkiewicz, Music, Assistant Professor.


 Urban histories of nineteenth-century Paris have long focused on visual phenomena: new vistas, new landmarks, and new ways of capturing modernity through photography and painting. What is less understood, however, is how urbanization altered the soundscape of the city. This talk examines Parisian street and café musicians and their representation in cartoons, memoirs, and police records. Through their lyrics as well as through published memoirs, songwriters offered vivid commentary on economics and politics in Second-Empire Paris, often focusing on the detrimental effects of urbanization on everyday musical life. I argue that Parisian popular music, far from being a trivial distraction, offered passersby alternative—and at times, subversive—narratives about urban living, construction and demolition, and the tensions between city and country. This talk is part of a larger project that brings together music history and urban history, and it seeks to shed interdisciplinary light on modernity as a sonic phenomenon in the nineteenth century city.

These talks are free and open to the public! We also provide free coffee, tea, and cake!

For more information about this event, please contact Humanties Center at 313-577-5471 or