Research project aims

The aim of my research is to explore whether popular or protest music has been an inspiration for or led to processes of social change; and whether this has involved processes of learning and/or education. Popular and protest music’s role in shaping public consciousness and the social and cultural history of the last almost 60 years is relatively well documented. However, while connections are often drawn between popular music and social change in popular culture such as films, and the mass media, the role of protest music and its influence in processes of social change is relatively under-researched and under-theorised.

My research project is aimed at generating new knowledge and theory on the informative and educative power of popular or protest music in processes of social change. It is hoped that this study will develop new understandings about the extent to which learning and/or education from popular and protest music is an inspiration or even a catalyst for audiences, particularly from marginalised groups, in processes of social change. I am also interested in how audiences might come to different understandings of their world and how to act to change their circumstances and the world around them, as a result of listening to this music. I am hoping that through this we will be able to add to this relatively under-researched and under-theorised field, and understand more about processes of social change, its participants and its relationship with popular and more specifically protest music.

Read more about my research and thesis.

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