Three on the Third – December

Three on the Third is a monthly series in which we highlight three books new to the library collection. Summaries of the books are provided along with shelf location and a link to the item in the catalog.  This month we have three exciting new additions to our collection linking music with literature and history.

Novel Sounds: Southern Fiction in the Age of Rock and Roll
by Florence Dore

Cover of the book Novel Sounds.

The 1950’s witnessed both the birth of rock and roll and the creation of Southern literature as we know it. In Novel Sounds, Florence Dore tells the story of how these forms of expression became intertwined and shows how Southern writers absorbed rock music and its technologies – tape, radio, vinyl – to develop the “rock novel.” Dore considers the work of Southern writers like William Faulkner, Flannery O’Connor, and William Styron alongside the music of Bessie Smith, Lead Belly, and Bob Dylan to uncover deep historical links between rock and Southern literature.
PS261 .D67 2018
Catalog Link – Novel Sounds

What Will I Be
by Philip M. Gentry

Picture of the book What Will I Be.

In the wake of World War II, the cultural life of the United States underwent a massive transformation. At the heart of these changes during the early Cold War were the rise of the concept of identity and a reformulation of the country’s political life. A revolution in music was taking place at the same time-a tumult of new musical styles and institutions that would lead to everything from the birth of rock ‘n’ roll to the new downtown experimental music scene. Together, these new cultural and musical trends came to define the era. In the search for new social affinities and modes of self-fashioning, music provided just the right tool. What Shall I Be follows the concept of identity as it developed alongside new post-war music making. Author Philip M. Gentry travels through four very different musical scenes: the R&B world of doo-wop pioneers the Orioles, the early film musicals of Doris Day, Asian American cabaret in San Francisco, and John Cage’s infamous 4’33”. The lives of musicians, composers, critics, and fans reveal how individuals negotiated the social changes sweeping the country in the initial days of the Cold War. As we are again swept up in a time of significant transformation, these early strategies help to inform the political and musical narratives of today.
ML3917.U6 G46 2017
Catalog Link – What Will I Be

Rock and Romanticism
by James Rovira

Cover of the book Rock and Romanticism.

Rock and Romanticism: Blake, Wordsworth, and Rock from Dylan to U2 is an edited anthology that seeks to explain just how rock and roll is a Romantic phenomenon that retrospectively sheds light on what literary Romanticism was at its different points of origin and what it has become in the present. This book allows Byron and Wollstonecraft to speak back to contemporary theories of Romanticism through Bob Dylan, and the Rolling Stones. Relying on Lowy and Sayre’s particularly appropriate terms for rock as well as the origins of these emotions. In chapter topics ranging from Bob Dylan to U2 and Blackberry Smoke, this work examines how rock and roll expands, interprets, restates, interrogates, and conflicts with literary Romanticism, all the while understanding that as a term “rock and roll,” in reference to popular music from the late 1940’s through the early 2000’s, is every bit as contradictory and difficult to define as the word Romanticism itself.
ML3849 .R63 2018
Catalog Link – Rock and Romanticism


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