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volume 2
july 1999

Music, culture and society in Europe


  Edited by Paul Rutten
  In September 1996 the European Music Office published its report on "Music in Europe". The second part of this study, edited by Paul Rutten, contains six critical essays and five case studies on the cultural value of music in the European Union. This page offers a short introduction by the editor.

  This report contains six critical interventions of scholars working in six different countries of the European Community and five descriptions of interesting cases concerning musical activity and initiatives within Europe.
  The European Music Office invited six experts, all well known in the field of social and cultural music studies, to shed their light on the role of music in European societies and cultures. The project was co-ordinated by an editor who stayed in close contact during the writing of the interventions. The result of this effort is the first part of this report. Without trying to give an exhaustive overview of every aspect of the social and cultural role of music, the six interventions contain a wealth of information on musical activity. Producers, markets, musicians, policy and music fans all get their share of attention. At the same time the interventions provide interesting perspectives on the role of music in Europe.
  The contributions are critical in a constructive way and do provide interesting starting points for discussions on an eventual European music policy but also for policy initiatives on other administrative levels. The European Music Office wants to stress that the perspectives and opinions echoed in the contributions are those of the respective authors and not necessarily those of the office.
  Apart from critical analysis, EMO tries to highlight concrete aspects of the musical practices in present day Europe. The five descriptions of some of these practices, included in this study, form another way of presenting aspects of the many faces of musical activity within the Europe.
  By creating platforms for discussion EMO wants to take part in the development of well-informed and elaborated music policy in Europe. Hopefully the collection of contributions in this volume serve that goal.
  This foreword originally appeared in: Rutten, Paul (ed.), Music, culture and society in Europe. Part II of: European Music Office, Music in Europe. Brussels, 1996, 61-62.
  1999 © Soundscapes