Theses/Dissertations - Academic Studies

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    The relational ethics of church music.
    (2018-07-19) Myrick, Nathan William, 1984-; Ingalls, Monique Marie.
    Music is an “indispensable” aspect of Protestant Christian worship, to use Brian Wren’s term (2000, 48). Yet it is also perceived as one of the most divisive aspects of that activity, with scholars, practitioners, and congregants alike contributing to this perspective. As scholars such as Donald Hustad (1993), Harold Best (1993, 2003), J. Nathan Corbitt (1998), Brian Wren (2000), James K. A. Smith (2009) and Jeremy S. Begbie (2011) have similarly noted, music connects people to each other and enlivens our emotional and relational convictions. This reality strongly suggests that music has ethical significance; if music is so emotionally and relationally powerful, and can be a source of unity and division, then it should be examined from within an ethical frame. It is surprising, however, that few scholars of Christian worship have attempted to consider music’s way of being in the world from an ethical perspective. This dissertation argues that a central problem in scholarship on music in Christian worship is that the ethical significance of church music has been sidestepped, ignored, or generally undertheorized. Using a multidisciplinary methodology drawn from ethnomusicological fieldwork at three Waco, Texas, Baptist churches and synthesizing theories of discourse, formation, and care ethics oriented towards restorative justice, I argue that church music is ethical when it preserves people in and restores people to just relationships with each other and, when applied directly to ecclesial settings, relationship with God.
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    American diversity and the Genesis of Mass settings following the Second Vatican Council : a case study of Mary Lou’s Mass and La misa panamericana.
    (2015-07-31) Favinger, Sarah Catherine.; Colman, Alfredo.
    This thesis will examine how ethnic diversity in American Catholicism contributed to the development of vernacular Mass settings in the wake of the Second Vatican Council. The case studies, Mary Lou’s Mass and La misa panamericana, represent two large ethnic groups within the American Catholic populace. Through examination of musical aesthetics from two cultural traditions, African-American and Mexican-American, and their integration into the Catholic Mass, the thesis will explore how the United States’ diverse Catholic population benefited from the changes of the Second Vatican Council.
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    The public invitation and "Gospel Hymns Nos. 1 to 6".
    (2012-11-29) Snider, Emily R.; Music, David W., 1949-; Music.; Baylor University. School of Music.
    Perhaps the most distinctive characteristic of traditional evangelical worship is the widespread practice of the "invitation" near the close of the worship service. A significant element of that invitation is the accompanying hymn, one that emphasizes the need for conversion and spiritual renewal. This thesis addresses the origin and early evolution of the public invitation, and more specifically, the hymns that have been used by evangelicals for this part of their worship. Hymns from Gospel Hymns Nos. 1 to 6, the most popular hymnal among evangelicals in the nineteenth century, are analyzed and discussed along five primary categories: 1) metaphors and imagery, 2) scriptural allusions, 3) overarching themes, 4) hymn forms, and 5) fundamental theological themes. Finally, hymns of three recently published Baptist hymnals, those belonging to what is presently the largest evangelical group, are evaluated and compared along similar lines to determine the nature of the contemporary hymn of invitation.