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A People's Music

A People's Music
Jazz in East Germany, 1945–1990

Part of New Studies in European History

  • Publication planned for: December 2019
  • availability: Not yet published - available from December 2019
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781108486187

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About the Authors
  • A People's Music presents the first full history of jazz in East Germany, drawing on new and previously unexamined sources and vivid eyewitness accounts. Helma Kaldewey chronicles the experiences of jazz musicians, fans, and advocates, and charts the numerous policies state socialism issued to manage this dynamic art form. Offering a radical revision of scholarly views of jazz as a musical genre of dissent, this vivid and authoritative study marks developments in the production, performance, and reception of jazz decade by decade, from the GDR's beginning in the 1940s to its end in 1990, examining how members of the jazz scene were engaged with (and were sometimes complicit with) state officials and agencies throughout the Cold War. From postwar rebuilding, to Stalinism and partition, to détente, Ostpolitik, and glasnost, and finally to its acceptance as a national art form, Kaldewey reveals just how many lives jazz lived.

    • Tells a story that has never before been told in full, and illuminates dynamics of the cultural Cold War dynamics from the perspective of jazz
    • Illustrates how jazz was used as an ideological tool within a communist country, through firsthand accounts and declassified sources
    • Overturns the established scholarly and popular view that jazz was primarily an art form of dissent
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    Product details

    • Publication planned for: December 2019
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781108486187
    • dimensions: 228 x 152 mm
    • availability: Not yet published - available from December 2019
  • Table of Contents

    List of Figures
    Selected Chronology
    List of Abbreviations
    Introduction
    1. Jazz in Weimar and Nazi Germany, 1918–1945
    2. Jazz in the Soviet Zone, 1945–1949
    3. Jazz in the Founding Years of the GDR, 1949–1961
    4. Jazz behind the Wall, 1961–1971
    5. The Rise of New Jazz, 1971–1979
    6. “A National Treasure”: Jazz Made in the GDR, 1980-1990
    Archival Sources
    Appendix
    Bibliography
    Index

  • Author

    Helma Kaldewey, Tulane University, Louisiana
    Helma Kaldewey is a musicologist, longtime teacher and researcher in the history of jazz. She has written and produced films about New Orleans' music culture in partnership with German public media.

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