Gender and sexuality in South African music

Walton, Chris, 1963- ; Muller, Stephanus (2005)

CITATION: Walton, C. & Muller, S. (ed). 2005. Gender and sexuality in South African music. Stellenbosch: SUN ePReSS.

The original publication is available from AFRICAN SUNMeDIA -


BOOK BLURB: For many years now, the manner in which gender and sexuality impinge upon musical creativity has been a focus of mainstream debate in Europe and the USA. This book, based on the papers of a conference organized by the University of Pretoria, is nevertheless the first of its kind to tackle these issues in a specifically South African context. How is it, for example, that a white, gay composer could during apartheid write cantatas glorifying the same nationalist society that deemed him to be perverse? What role did gender play in the career of the premier Afrikaner woman composer of her day, whose success was matched only by the ridicule she inspired amongst her peers? And to what extent can gendered and sexualized hierarchies be discemed in African popular and indigenous music? These and many other questions are addressed, ranging from the straight and narrow to the queer and wide. The result is a book that is invigorating, even at times uncomfortable: a frank, scholarly, full-frontal portrait of a hithero ignored, but vital area of South African music theory.

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