Posts tagged "genre"

But when you start talking about individuals, instead of humanity in general, universals [regarding music] are a lot harder to come by. Much depends on culture. The emotions expressed in many of those ragas that Pandora’s experts are presently decoding, for instance, are lost on the typical Westerner. Just as we’re hard-wired to learn a language, but not to speak English or French, our specific musical understanding, and thus taste, depends on context. If a piece of music sounds dissonant to you, it probably has to do with what sort of music you were exposed to growing up, because you were probably an “expert listener” in your culture’s music by about age 6, Levitin writes.

Rob Walker, The Song Decoders, New York Times Magazine

This seems like it might have something to do with that whole genre-is-defined-by-culture thing I was banging on about a bit ago. I swear I’m coming back to that, too. There’s more to say.

Oct 25

[The Pandora] genome, quietly, doesn’t really screen out sociocultural information. For instance, its algorithms are tweaked by genre, and the inclusion of genes for “influence” (“swing” or “gospel,” for example) brings in factors that aren’t strictly about sound.
Oct 25

Karen Manners Smith, “Harry Potter’s Schooldays: J. K. Rowling and the British Boarding School Novel,” in Reading Harry Potter: Critical Essays (2003)
Oh, the joys of genre.
Background: Because I’m a massive nerd, when, a few months back, I was looking around on the Internets for something or other relating to Harry Potter, I came across an essay about something to do with the portrayal of gender in the books. Of course, I was bout it bout it, and I had to see if the collection of essays from which that particular piece had come was available in the UW library. It was, and when I finally got around to looking for it last week, there turned out to be a ton of books devoted to critical essays on HP. (Probably not that unexpected, right?) So I picked one at random because what better way to start the new school quarter than to read a book of essays about something completely unrelated to my course material?
Smith’s essay examines the books as part of the school story genre, something I like a lot because it’s that aspect that is a big part of their fundamental appeal to me. If I cared about fantasy, I would have finished Lord of the Rings, you know?
Back when the series was unfinished and folks were making predictions, I think a lot of people missed the way genre concerns would dictate much of the plot. Well, OK, it was pretty obvious Dumbledore had to die because of the hero journey thing, but that seemed to be as far as many folks got. What’s neat about Smith’s essay, written before the publication of Order of the Phoenix, is that just by treating the books as school stories, every single prediction she makes turns out to be accurate. Sure, her divination is a touch vague, and you might even call it obvious. But a 100% hit rate is nothing to scoff at: Draco ends up reformed, and reaches an understanding with Harry, after Harry saves his life (Twice, as Ron points out); Snape was indeed better understood; Ron became increasingly sober and self-confident, and though he left Hogwarts before he had the chance to be made Head Boy, he and Hermione were made prefects, a position for which Harry is passed over. Oh yeah, and in Half Blood Prince, Harry became Gryffindor Quidditch captain.
Well done, Karen Manners Smith.

Karen Manners Smith, “Harry Potter’s Schooldays: J. K. Rowling and the British Boarding School Novel,” in Reading Harry Potter: Critical Essays (2003)

Oh, the joys of genre.

Background: Because I’m a massive nerd, when, a few months back, I was looking around on the Internets for something or other relating to Harry Potter, I came across an essay about something to do with the portrayal of gender in the books. Of course, I was bout it bout it, and I had to see if the collection of essays from which that particular piece had come was available in the UW library. It was, and when I finally got around to looking for it last week, there turned out to be a ton of books devoted to critical essays on HP. (Probably not that unexpected, right?) So I picked one at random because what better way to start the new school quarter than to read a book of essays about something completely unrelated to my course material?

Smith’s essay examines the books as part of the school story genre, something I like a lot because it’s that aspect that is a big part of their fundamental appeal to me. If I cared about fantasy, I would have finished Lord of the Rings, you know?

Back when the series was unfinished and folks were making predictions, I think a lot of people missed the way genre concerns would dictate much of the plot. Well, OK, it was pretty obvious Dumbledore had to die because of the hero journey thing, but that seemed to be as far as many folks got. What’s neat about Smith’s essay, written before the publication of Order of the Phoenix, is that just by treating the books as school stories, every single prediction she makes turns out to be accurate. Sure, her divination is a touch vague, and you might even call it obvious. But a 100% hit rate is nothing to scoff at: Draco ends up reformed, and reaches an understanding with Harry, after Harry saves his life (Twice, as Ron points out); Snape was indeed better understood; Ron became increasingly sober and self-confident, and though he left Hogwarts before he had the chance to be made Head Boy, he and Hermione were made prefects, a position for which Harry is passed over. Oh yeah, and in Half Blood Prince, Harry became Gryffindor Quidditch captain.

Well done, Karen Manners Smith.


New genre alert.

  • Sunbelt Pop

Bright, melodic pop tunes, usually but not exclusively guitar-driven, with an implicit suburban outlook, made by bands from the American sunbelt, particularly the areas of fastest population growth, such as Florida, Arizona, Georgia, Texas, and Southern California.

E.g. Pre–Can’t Be Tamed Miley Cyrus, Jimmy Eat World, Weezer, some Pavement, New Found Glory, Kitty Pryde, Hey Monday, Hilary Duff.


Fictions.