Musical life in the ‘first industrial city’
in Music and the sociological gaze
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This chapter pursues some of the implications of William Weber's contention that although they are related in some ways, social class and musical taste must be considered as ‘quite distinct factors’. It develops this theme through a consideration of some of the historical research into the growth of musical institutions in urban areas since the eighteenth century, with particular reference to the situation in Manchester, often considered to be the world's ‘first industrial city’. Here, the emergence of Charles Hallé's orchestra and its symphonic concerts are not seen as the inevitable outcome of class-based ideology, but as a consequence of the successful promotion of a relatively new discourse of aesthetic appreciation by various ‘cultural entrepreneurs’ and the establishment of a ‘classical’ music art world.

Music and the sociological gaze

Art worlds and cultural production

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