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Listening and Longing: Music Lovers in the Age of Barnum (Music Culture) Paperback – December 15, 2011

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Product Details

  • Series: Music Culture
  • Paperback: 280 pages
  • Publisher: Wesleyan (December 15, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0819571628
  • ISBN-13: 978-0819571625
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 5.8 x 8.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,337,367 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"Cavicchi's book is a richly detailed, lucid account of how and why music listening is an active, participatory aspect of music loving. Listening and Longing has changed fundamentally the way I think about the development of America's music culture." (Dale Cockrell, author of Demons of Disorder: Early Blackface Minstrels and Their World)

"With grace and insight, Daniel Cavicchi demonstrates how the first modern 'cultures of hearing' emerged in relation to new markets and venues, new urban environments, and new moral taxonomies surrounding the very categories of 'music,' 'audience,' and 'listening.'" (James W. Cook, author of The Arts of Deception)

“Listening and Longing performs a valuable service in connecting modern conceptions of fame, fandom, and self-consciously specialized forms of ‘audiencing’ to their nineteenth-century roots.”—Franklin Bruno, Los Angeles Review of Books

“Daniel Cavicchi’s fascinating Listening and Longing: Music Lovers in the Age of Barnum, has been blowing my mind.”—Frank Oteri, New Music Box

“As the title reveals, Cavicchi’s purpose is to put emphasis on ‘music-listening’ rather than on the more common ‘music making.’ Cavicchi did extensive research and the book is well argued, from several points of view.”—W.K. Kearns, Choice

“a detailed look at 19th-century music consumers that…stands as a painstaking, groundbreaking work of scholarship that adds substantially to our understanding.”—Robert Christgau, Barnes & Noble Review


“Impeccably researched, Listening and Longing shows us how Jenny Lind was the Lady Gaga of her day. Cavicchi’s excellent use of primary materials, such as 19th-century diary entries and periodicals, documents how the seeds were germinated for today’s music-fan culture.” (Holly George-Warren, coauthor of The Road to Woodstock)

More About the Author

Daniel Cavicchi is the Dean of Liberal Arts at Rhode Island School of Design. His books include Listening and Longing: Music Lovers in the Age of Barnum, Tramps Like Us: Music and Meaning Among Springsteen Fans, and (as co-editor) My Music: Explorations of Music in Daily Life. His public work has included the curriculum accompanying Martin Scorsese's The Blues film series; Songs of Conscience, Sounds of Freedom, an inaugural exhibit at the Grammy Museum in Los Angeles; and other projects with the Public Broadcasting System and the National Park Service.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

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Interesting subject matter. As a music journalist I tend to hear things from the other side of the spectrum. The subject matter grounded me and made me realize how people listen and how diverse their musical tastes can be.
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