HMVA04326U Musicology/Theatre: How we rhythm worlds: concepts, representations, practices

Volume 2019/2020



Rhythm is about ordering time and space: in music, scores, instruments, urban space, sculptures, dance, kitchens or other realms of everyday life. Drawing on different disciplinary perspectives, this course considers how concepts of rhythm and its representations have changed over time. The course focuses principally on the 19th–21st centuries, exploring musical practices in a number of genres and cultures, as well as practices in visual and performance arts, anthropology, science and technology. We will begin with the 19th century, reflecting on musical composition and performance in relation to all sorts of scientific and anthropological developments, which helped categorize and establish different cultural norms of rhythm and acts of ‘rhythming’.

Next, we will consider how these notions of rhythm have been adapted, challenged and transformed since then. We will engage this through a combination of theoretical and practical-based work, including sound walks, creating and performing experimental scores (i.e., Cardew, Treatise, 1967), and exploring afro-diasporic electronic dance music and its rhythmachines (Eshun, More Brilliant Than The Sun, 1998).


Possible reading (subject to elaboration):


Janet Cardiff, The Walk Book. Köln: Walther König, 2005,

Alexandra Hui, Julia Kursell, Myles Jackson (eds.) Music, Sound and the Laboratory from 1750-1980, Osiris, 28: 2013.

Henri Lefébvre, Rhythmanalysis: Space, Time and Everyday Life. London: Continuum, 2004 [1992].


The course will be divided into three thematic sections: (1) Rhythm machines (2) Representing rhythm: scores in music and the arts (3) Rhythms in everyday life & urban space
Kan aflægges som Frit emne C som KA-TV på Musikvidenskab
  • Category
  • Hours
  • Exam Preparation
  • 82
  • Guidance
  • 1
  • Lectures
  • 36
  • Preparation
  • 301
  • Total
  • 420
Continuous feedback during the course of the semester
7,5 ECTS
Type of assessment
Censorship form
No external censorship