Joseph Swain

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Joseph Swain

Associate Professor of Music, Emeritus

Department/Office Information


BA Dartmouth College 1977; MA, PhD Harvard University 1980, 1983

Music criticism and critical theory, music and language perception, cognitive science, American musical theater, American Catholic church music; music director of Tapestry, the All-Centuries Singers from 1992-2011; music director St. Malachy's Church, Sherburne NY from 2000-2017.

Phillips Academy, 1977-78, 1980-84

Music criticism and critical theory, history of western music.

Listening to Bach and Handel: A Comparative Critique (Pendragon, 2018)

A Historical Dictionary of Baroque Music (Rowman & Littlefield, 2013)

Sacred Treasure: Understanding Catholic Liturgical Music (Liturgical Press, 2012)

A Historical Dictionary of Sacred Music (expanded ed. Rowman & Littlefield, 2016; original ed. 2006)

Harmonic Rhythm: Analysis and Interpretation (Oxford, 2002)

Musical Languages (Norton, 1997);

The Broadway Musical (Oxford University Press, 1990; expanded ed. Scarecrow 2002)

Sound Judgment: Basic Ideas About Music (San Francisco Press, 1987)

Articles in America, Journal of Musicology, Music Perception, Music Analysis, Criticus Musicus, Opera Quarterly and others.

Colgate University Research Council Senior Faculty Leave Grant (1995, 2007); 1991 Deems Taylor Award for The Broadway Musical; NEH summer research stipend 1986; first prize in music analysis competition sponsored by University of Wisconsin 1985