Cover for BROOKS, BASHFORD, & MAGEE, EDS.: Over Here, Over There: Transatlantic Conversations on the Music of World War I. Click for larger image
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Over Here, Over There

Transatlantic Conversations on the Music of World War I

Enlisting music to fight the war to end all wars

During the Great War, composers and performers created music that expressed common sentiments like patriotism, grief, and anxiety. Yet music also revealed the complexities of the partnership between France, Great Britain, Canada, and the United States. Sometimes, music reaffirmed a commitment to the shared wartime mission. At other times, it reflected conflicting views about the war from one nation to another or within a single nation.

Over Here, Over There examines how composition, performance, publication, recording, censorship, and policy shaped the Atlantic allies' musical response to the war. The first section of the collection offers studies of individuals. The second concentrates on communities, whether local, transnational, or on the spectrum in between. Essay topics range from the sinking of the Lusitania through transformations of the entertainment industry to the influenza pandemic.

Contributors: Christina Bashford, William Brooks, Deniz Ertan, Barbara L. Kelly, Kendra Preston Leonard, Gayle Magee, Jeffrey Magee, Michelle Meinhart, Brian C. Thompson, and Patrick Warfield

"With its stimulating blend of revealing music interpretation and compelling historical context, this volume brings the music of World War I to life in fascinating detail."--Christina Baade, author of Victory through Harmony: The BBC and Popular Music in World War II

"There is a dearth of detailed work on classical music's response to the First World War, so often seen as 'the most literary war in history'. There is even less written about the parallel and intricately linked responses of American, Canadian and British composers. This is a timely, fascinating and accessible study, crossing continents to ask questions of music's role in times of international crisis."--Kate Kennedy, coeditor of The Silent Morning: Culture and Memory after the Armistice

Publication of this book was supported in part by the Otto Kinkeldey Endowment of the American Musicological Society, funded in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.


William Brooks is a professor of music at the University of York and an associate professor emeritus of composition at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Christina Bashford is an associate professor of musicology at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and the author of The Pursuit of High Culture: John Ella and Chamber Music in Victorian London. Gayle Magee is a professor of musicology at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and the author of Charles Ives Reconsidered.

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