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Jazz/Not JazzThe Music and Its Boundaries$
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David Ake, Charles Hiroshi Garrett, and Daniel Goldmark

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780520271036

Published to California Scholarship Online: September 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520271036.001.0001

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Deconstructing the Jazz Tradition

Deconstructing the Jazz Tradition

The “Subjectless Subject” of New Jazz Studies

(p.264) CHAPTER 12 Deconstructing the Jazz Tradition
Jazz/Not Jazz

Sherrie Tucker

University of California Press

This essay is a reflection on the state of academic jazz studies in the years following Scott DeVeaux's influential article “Constructing the Jazz Tradition” and other interdisciplinary scholarship that called for critical perspectives on jazz historiography, canon formation, and institutionalization. If “deconstructing the jazz tradition” has overtaken “constructing the jazz tradition” as the modus operandi of academic jazz studies today, what is jazz in the “New Jazz Studies”? If we don't teach the jazz tradition, what do we teach? This essay serves as both a reflection on the discipline's current dilemmas and an impassioned call for scholars to listen more closely—to the music, to the musicians, and to one another—in order to nurture a field as multifaceted and vibrant as jazz itself.

Keywords:   jazz, academia, historiography, canon formation, New Jazz Studies

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