HC221H - The Pop Voice

Professor:  Drew Nobile

4.00 credits

CRN 32919: Monday & Wednesday, 10:00-11:20am @ CH 103

In pop songs, the sound of the singer’s voice carries at least as much meaning as the words it sings. In this course, we will investigate how pop singers communicate aspects of identity through their vocal delivery, discussing artists such as Bob Dylan, Aretha Franklin, Alanis Morissette, T-Pain, Beyoncé, and Billie Eilish. We will focus on the semiotics of vocal timbre, aiming to apply systematic analysis to broad humanistic issues, including gender, race, somatics, and embodiment. Through reading, discussing, listening, and writing, students will approach popular music as a subject of critical discourse, thus highlighting this art form’s broad cultural significance.