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The place of the phonograph and gramophone in Sweden 1900-1925
Örebro University, School of Music, Theatre and Art. (Musikvetenskap)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-5809-3575
2017 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation only (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

It has almost become a commonplace to describe the entrance of the phonograph into Western music history as taking place in the parlor, or (depending on the decade of focus) the more modern living room. ”Americans”, as we are told in an influential book, ”increasingly welcomed the phonograph into their parlors” (Katz). People were ”at home with the phonograph” (Gelatt) already at the turn of the 20th century, since there was ”a phonograph in every home” (Millard). With classical musicians such as Caruso, Toscanini, and Heifetz on record, one can even speak of a “domestication of the concert hall” (Symes).

This paper looks at role of the phonograph/gramophone from a different perspective. Rather than the economically prosperous east coast of the USA, the focus is on Sweden, a country with one of the lowest standards of living in Europe during the first half of the 20th century. Instead of commercial advertising (as in many of the above cases), the sources are daily papers and weekly journals (addressing the middle and lower classes), together with catalogues of early housing- and home exhibitions, and an ethnographic 1962 questionnaire with national scope, asking for personal memories of the gramophone at the turn of the century. By inquiring the locations, spaces and rooms where gramophones were actually used, a different picture appears that emphasizes popular music and dancing, ultimately questioning the role of “audile technique” and “private acoustic space” as “a precondition for the commodification of sound” (Sterne). 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017.
Keyword [en]
Phonograph, gramophone, place, space, music
National Category
Musicology
Research subject
Musicology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-59154OAI: oai:DiVA.org:oru-59154DiVA: diva2:1134988
Conference
The Place of Music, Loughborough University, UK, June 28-29 2017
Projects
EVERYDAY DEVICES. MEDIATISATION, DISCIPLINING AND LOCALISATION OF MUSIC IN SWEDEN 1900-1970
Funder
Swedish Research Council, 2015-01858
Available from: 2017-08-22 Created: 2017-08-22 Last updated: 2017-08-22Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf