I reviewed Kathryn Marsh’s The Musical Playground: Global Tradition and Change in Children’s Songs and Games for the Journal of Folklore Research. It’s quite a book, really underscoring how these enduring oral traditions connect to growing networks of media, migration, and education.
Marsh’s book — based on a massive international research study of children’s clapping games in seven countries — is nicely complemented by a new study going on in the U.K. about the relationships between kids’ singing game traditions and new media — games, phones, the Internet, etc. The project, led by Jackie Marsh at the University of Sheffield, among others, involves new ethnographic studies of kids’ playground games, an archival project digitizing the Opie’s collections, and an effort to program the Nintendo Wii to play some of these games. See the write-up in the Telegraph. It’s really nice to see this emerging synergy between research into kids’ expressive culture and their technology/media practices, and the U.K. project will be an amazing resource when it’s completed.
My review after the jump. I’ll link to it when it goes up at JFR.
[Update: This piece was published in The Oxford Handbook of Mobile Music Studies in March 2014.]
I just sent off a chapter about sharing earbuds for a forthcoming volume from Oxford UP on Mobile Music Studies. My chapter is called “Earbuds Are Good for Sharing: Children’s Sociable Uses of Headphones at a Vermont Primary School.”
My review of Kathryn Montgomery’s Generation Digital: Politics, Commerce, and Childhood in the Age of the Internet is up at the Resource Center for Cyberculture Studies, along with a response from Montgomery. RCCS, by the way, is a tremendous resource for book reviews — David Silver does a great job getting multiple reviews of interesting books and most of the time even including author responses. Wonderful stuff.