Musical Cultures of the Gulf South

Coordinate Major in Musical Cultures of the Gulf South


Program Description

The Gulf South produced a distinctive set of musical cultures that continues to influence national and international musical currents: jazz blues, zydeco, Cajun music, and brass-band music. As a city central to the African diaspora, New Orleans gave birth to a pan-African regional culture equally influenced by immigrants from the Caribbean -- Cuba and Haiti, in particular -- as by the ruling nations of Spain and France. The mission of this coordinate undergraduate major is to educate students in the underlying currentsof these musical cultures through a historical grasp of the Atlantic slave trade, the rituals of expressive culture and resistance in the Caribbean, and the social, economic, and political history of the region. The Gulf South extends from Texas across the coasts of Louisiana, Alabama and Mississippi, around Florida into the Caribbean, where Cuba lies a mere 90 miles away. "New Orleans Music" is a rubric that stretches from ragtime to hiphop, and includes the city's seminal influence on rock and roll, funk, and rhythm and blues, as each assumed national form. New Orleans remains the site of a range of vibrant living cultural traditions, including the Mardi Gras Indians; the second-line culture of Social Aid and Pleasure clubs, and Creole and Cajun cuisine. This coordinate major is offered under the auspices of the New Orleans Center for the Gulf South.

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Theatre and Dance



Required Courses

The coordinate major Musical Cultures of the Gulf South first requires students to declare a major in another discipline before declaring the MCGS coordinate major. The program is an interdisciplinary, 27-credit program that requires courses in Music, Anthropology, History, Theater and Dance, and has elective offerings in English, African Diaspora Studies, Communication, and French.

There are three required core courses:


From among the courses listed below, students mustselecta course at the 3000-level or abovein Music, History,or Anthropology. Students will take a minimum ofthree additional electives or nine credits from the courses listed in the major in order to reach a minimum of 27 credits for the major. A total of two 1000-level courses can count towards the coordinate major. No more than two dance courses can count towards the major.