Is this my story? Is this my song? Exploring narrative dissonance in worship music through the lens of ludomusicology.
This thesis explores connections between ludomusicology, sociology of religious narratives, and church music studies in a larger context of the digital mediatization of music and culture. Analysis of cultural trends around digital and online media demonstrates the importance of mediatization for consideration in church music. Exploration of concepts including Csikszentmihalyi’s flow, ludonarrative dissonance and ludomusical dissonance, identity integration in religious narratives, and interactivity in religion shows how digital culture is shaped by and also informs the understanding and practice of religion. A case study analyzing a survey distributed to four congregations or faith-based groups presents evidence that these concepts and vocabulary are productive and clarifying. This thesis points to the potential for interdisciplinary scholarship between church music studies and ludomusicology, among other developing digital media fields.