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date: 12 December 2019

Abstract and Keywords

The practices of vocal music described in this chapter reflect major differences in cultural thinking, comparing those of non-literate societies with that of the West. The rise of vocally based noise music in popular entertainment is discussed as an example of an ersatz form of cultural behavior. The relative importance of acoustic analysis and socio-cultural contexts in the explanation of vocal practices is discussed. It cannot be claimed that a more sophisticated science or mathematics has produced a more powerful or efficient mode of vocal expression. Each cultural system and set of vocal practices has its own integrity and its own relevance to understanding the human condition, and it is only by studying the different vocal practices from within such contexts that their value to humanity as a whole can be appreciated.

Keywords: vocal music, culture, acoustic analysis, non-literate societies, noise music

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