Finland, Helsinki

Heavy Metal Music in Contemporary History and Society

when 4 August 2015 - 20 August 2015
duration 3 weeks
credits 5 ECTS
fee EUR 640

This course explores the development of the popular music style of Heavy Metal. The primary focus will be on the history of the genre and its importance in contemporary western society. Much attention will be on Finland, where HM is particularly successful and characterises musical culture more than in other European or non-European countries.

Course leader

Mr. Paolo Ribaldini

Target group

The course aims to be as multidisciplinary as possible, and bring out collaboration between students with different backgrounds. The ideal candidates are advanced Bachelor or Master students from the disciplinary fields of musical practice, musicology, social studies, semiotics, cultural studies, anthropology, philosophy, psychology, language studies, gender studies, and pedagogy. Interest in the field is strongly recommended. Familiarity with music theory is considered a plus, although not mandatory: the teaching methods involve team-working within the class, so that the single disciplinary lacks can be amended by cooperation, and the individual competence find a fertile soil to be usefully brought to the benefit of the group. The grouping is made at the beginning of the course, according to the criteria of gathering in the same group students with diversified competences. Each group should count 4-6 students. The purposes are the enhancement of collaboration within the class, and the filling of gaps between the individuals’ educational and experiential backgrounds.

Course aim

The students will appreciate the importance of Heavy Metal music in western musical culture, its historical development and the characteristics of the subculture related to the music. This subculture is particularly strong in Finland, and Finnish HM is recognised worldwide as a key manifestation of this musical style. The students will also achieve competences in music critique, musical theory, the sociology of music, music semiotics and cultural studies. Furthermore, the course gives them a solid basis to critically understand popular music genres other than HM.

Fee info

EUR 640: This course fee applies to degree and PhD students who pay the fee before June 1, 2015.

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