Movement: Journey of the Beat

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractpeer-review


Movement: Journey of the Beat addresses the trajectory and transition of popular culture through the modality of rhythm. It configures fresh narratives and new histories necessary to understand why auditory cultures have become increasingly significant in the digital age. Atomised and mobile technologies, which utilise sonic media through streaming, on-line radio and podcasts, have become ubiquitous in a post-work environment. These sonic media provide not merely the mechanisms of connection but also the contexts for understanding changing formations of both identity and community.

This research addresses, through rhythm, how popular music culture, central to changing perceptions of ‘self’ and ‘others’ through patterns of production and consumption, must also be viewed as instrumental in shaping new platforms of communication that have resonance not only through the emergence of new social networks and cultural economies but also in the development of media literacies and pedagogic strategies. The shift to online technologies for cultural production and global consumption, although immersed in leisure practices, more significantly alludes to changing dynamics of power and knowledge. An online ecology represents a significant shift in the role of place and time in creative production and its subsequent access. Popular music invariably provides an entry point and subsequent platform for such shifts and this thesis looks to the rhythms within this popular culture in as much as they encode these transformations.

This doctoral research builds on the candidate’s established career as music producer, broadcaster, journalist and teacher to construct an appropriate theoretical framework to indicate how the construction, transmission and consumption of popular music rhythms give an understanding of changing social contexts. The thesis maps the movement of commonly recognised popular rhythms from their places of construction to the spaces of reception within broader political, socio-economic and cultural frameworks. The thesis probes the contribution of place and time in transforming global cultures, via social geography and memory, positioning such changes within readings of mobility, stasis, modernity and technology. By consciously addressing multiple disciplines, from populist to academic, Movement provides evidence of how wider structural changes have become reified within the beat and how in turn rhythm provides an appropriate modality through which change can be negotiated and understood.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages335
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2011

Bibliographical note

PhD Thesis which has been basis on numerous presentations


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