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Race & Popular Music

From blackface minstrelsy to the Broadway stage, from punk rock to the VMAs, American popular music, both live and recorded, has long been one of the most prominent and public sites of racialization, discrimination, and their contestation at home and around the world. The RPM initiative brings together scholars and artists at Washington University in St. Louis and beyond to explore the intersection of race and popular music. We stage public lectures, conversations, and online interviews among musicologists, cultural historians, and scholars of media, theater and performance. At stake are not only our diverse interdisciplinary approaches but the very meanings we ascribe to performances themselves.

key contacts

Patrick Burke

Head of Musicology

Associate Professor, Ethnomusicology

Paige McGinley

Assistant Professor of Performing Arts

Jennifer Gallinat

Administrative Coordinator