Life Flows On in Endless Song

Life Flows On in Endless Song : Folk Songs and American History

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Featuring a selective discography of key recordings, this book offers an accessible model for using folk songs as a richly evocative reflection of the American past.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 240 pages
  • 157.48 x 226.06 x 20.32mm | 521.63g
  • Baltimore, United States
  • English
  • 1 table
  • 0252034554
  • 9780252034558

Review quote

"Life Flows on in Endless Song is full of examples that enrich our understanding of the aggregate forces that have transformed America since the colonial era."--The Journal of American History "The best, most up-to-date survey of this topic in print, this is a book for those interested in the intersection of music/song and historical events and figures. Recommended."--Choice "Wells beautifully explains why some songs have continually touched the American psyche for far longer than these states have been a nation."--The Journal of Southern History "Those who consider folk song at its best to be the purest form of social history will thoroughly enjoy this book."--Virginia Quarterly Review "A lovely read with fascinating origin tales of many songs readers will delight in remembering."--Journal of Social History "A muscular, detailed, well researched, stylish and celebratory history of folk music from early America to the 20th Century, with side trips into Britain when necessary to illustrate a point or track a song's lineage."--Sing Out!
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Table of contents

Preface: Chapter 1: Who Was Tom Dooley?: History and Folk Songs 1; Chapter 2: Careless Love: Courtship, Marriage, and Children 14; Chapter 3: "Mine Eyes Have Seen the Glory": Of God and Country 57; Chapter 4: "Take This Hammer": Work and the Labor Movement 105; Chapter 5: The Man Who Never Returned: Ships, Trains and Other Transportation 150; Chapter 6: Just Lookin' for a Home: Traveling On 190; Chapter 7: Nobody Knows the Trouble I've Seen: Hard Times and Hard Men 231; Chapter 8: How Can I Keep from Singing?: Huddie Ledbetter and Woody Guthrie 277; Coda: Thinking about Folk Songs 307; Bibliography and Discography 321
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About Robert V. Wells

Robert V. Wells is the Chauncey H. Winters Professor of History and Social Sciences at Union College in Schenectady, New York, and the author of Facing the 'King of Terrors': Living with Death in an American Community in Schenectady, New York, 1750-1990 and other works.
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