Understanding young people’s preferences for different genres of modern music : case studies of two schools in Manchester

Bachelard, DL 2015, Understanding young people’s preferences for different genres of modern music : case studies of two schools in Manchester , MPhil thesis, University of Salford.

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My dissertation’s aim is to understand how British school children coming from varying backgrounds, subject to different social influences, and with different interests and ambitions, develop preferences for different musical genres. My dissertation examines current literature focusing on young people’s musical tastes, beginning with the theoretical debate over the concept of subculture between the CCCS researchers and the post-subculturalists. I adopt Hesmondhalgh’s (2005) approach: young people’s musical tastes are influenced both by social structure and musical form. I also consider the largely separate, questionnaire-based approach of the ‘youth music survey researchers’. My subjects were pupils of two secondary schools in Manchester: both Roman Catholic, one boys-only and one girls-only. I adopted a mixed methods approach, utilising focus groups and a survey based on questionnaire comprising closed-answer and open-answer questions. My study findings showed that pupils’ preferences for pop songs, folk songs, urban songs and rock songs correlated differently with a range of independent social factors, although pupils’ preferences were equally influenced by songs’ musical form and fashion. Social factors important for pop and folk songs were being a girl and having friends with similar musical tastes. The findings for pop songs contributed considerably to the theory of bedroom culture. Pupil’s preferences for urban and rock songs were less easily explained. However, when I controlled for status of pupils’ homes, I found career ambition, home location, taking part in musical activities, ethnicity and sex to play roles to some extent. Although my study has limitations, it suggests that a flexible approach and recognition of the influences of social background factors, such as home social status, sex, and friends’ musical taste, as well as those of musical forms and practices, can develop existing theory and add new theoretical insights and knowledge about how young people develop their preferences for groups of songs.

Item Type: Thesis (MPhil)
Themes: Subjects outside of the University Themes
Schools: Schools > School of Arts & Media > Arts, Media and Communication Research Centre
Funders: Non funded research
Depositing User: DL Bachelard
Date Deposited: 05 Jun 2017 10:52
Last Modified: 27 Aug 2021 20:14
URI: https://usir.salford.ac.uk/id/eprint/34032

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