Dave Anians

Publication Date


Document Type


First Advisor

Bingle, Benjamin

Degree Name

B.A. (Bachelor of Arts)

Legacy Department

Center for Non-Governmental Organization Leadership Development


This paper works to answer the question of how advances in the technology of music delivery and sharing (such as radio, records, the internet) affect the role of music in American social movements. This is done first by defining the role of music in social movements as the providing of three services in the name of a movement: education, solidarity, and memory. The thesis of this work is that advancements in music delivery and sharing have the potential to affect the role of music in social movements, but these three services remain. This thesis is tested by analyzing the history of technology in music development and sharing, applying this historical context to three different 20th and 21st century social movements by looking at changes in education, solidarity, and memory, and interviewing two organizers involved in both politics and music in the service of social movements. The findings of this paper show that both technology and music are too constricted by their identity as tools to affect any neutral change, thus proving the thesis correct. The real power in affecting social movement change, either positively or negatively, lies in the use of these tools to complement or counteract one another.


Includes bibliographical references.


31 pages




Northern Illinois University

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