Struthers, Stephen J R (1986) A study of social relations in the recording of popular music. Doctoral thesis, Keele University.

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The production of recordings is examined from a social production perspective. It is argued that "conventional sociology of art" presents a partisan view of creative activity which prevents it acknowledging the reality of cultural production today as exemplified by the recording of popular music. Some recent developments in related intellectual traditions show how "art" and "artists" are social constructions and lead towards a more inclusive, phenomenologically influenced, "social production" perspective. It is argued that the production of recordings takes place in the shadow of earlier work, within a structure of aesthetics and concepts of creativity created by the various institutions of the "art world", especially those of the cultural market place. The development of recording as a business in the U.K. is traced and contexted within the contemporary development of both national and international entertainment and cultural industries. The impact of business arrangements on the production and distribution of recordings is examined. Wider social concerns are shown to be assimilated into the finished recording through the structure of the work organisation responsible for its production. This incorporates both the characteristic capitalist division of labour and the related artistic division of labour, which affect the finished recording through the impact of specific working relations and practices on the distribution of opportunities for decision making on aesthetic matters amongst recording personnel. Similarly, the technology of recording which has a profound effect on the shape of the finished artifact is shown to mediate the priorities of capitalist organisations. Differing aesthetics adopted by recording personnel are shown to be related to the dominant technology of the time.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
Divisions: Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > School of Criminology and Sociology
Contributors: Fyfe, Gordon (Thesis advisor)
Depositing User: Lisa Bailey
Date Deposited: 24 Jan 2020 10:48
Last Modified: 24 Jan 2020 10:48

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