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Concise History of Western Music (Third Edition) 3rd Edition

3.3 out of 5 stars 15 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0393928037
ISBN-10: 0393928039
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Barbara Russano Hanning (Professor of Music, The City College and Graduate Center, CUNY) taught music history to undergraduate and graduate students for forty years and is the author of a book on early opera. She has served as president of the Society for Seventeenth-Century Music and chaired the Music Department at City College for fifteen years.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 752 pages
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company; 3 edition (July 27, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0393928039
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393928037
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 1.2 x 11.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.7 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #951,853 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Michael New on May 2, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I've used this book for Music History 1 and 2, and after having spent the past year studying from this book regularly, I have to say it is one of the worst textbooks I have ever used. When reading, it becomes obvious very quickly that the text has been condensed from a much larger work, and the author has very little knowledge about the material itself. The language is flowery and vague, and the author spends most of her time simply praising the composer or the work as "wonderful", "influential", "brilliant", and all kinds of other useless adjectives. I've spent hours reading this book only to begin a test that asks for an essay on Brahms and realize how painfully little I actually know about him. You will read through several pages on a composer only to learn the most basic facts about his life, and a short list of works he composed. The rest is garbage. The accessibility of the language is tempting, but save yourself hours of wasted time and find a different book.
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Format: Hardcover
I have been using Hanning's Concise History Vol. 2 in my Music History classes. I have found it an excellent tool. She uses standard excerpts often throughout the text with original manuscript citings and easily understood analyses. Each of the chapters begins with an excellent overview and ends with a review. Both are a strong broad cross section of historic context. Excellent period artwork in full color is included.

The teachers manual gives a good overview and can be used in class to teach from. The quizzes are appropriate and emphasize material that is most significant to each chapter. If I were to write a manual I would want to include what she has.

The anthology, CD and print, are well done and affordable. I have found the recordings she uses to be excellent in quality and fitting to each of the periods. I have struggles with this in other publisher's works especially with regard to the price. My students have told me they listen to these CDs long after the class has ended.

I do wish there was more from the current period, especially with regard for Rock, Pop and Contemporary Christian Music Culture. That said I think Hanning has done an exceptional job in capturing a concise history of western music culture.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I had to buy this book for my Music History class and I absolutely hate it. Also, I am disappointed because this does not come with the Listening Guide like the book says, it is just a workbook to try and keep you on track with what the Chapters were supposed to teach you. Unfortunately, from the text book you can't answer most of the questions in the guide. Like others have said, the language of the text book is incredibly vague. Important terms are not explained well within the Chapters or in the glossary. This book and the text book are a complete waste of money!

If you HAVE to buy this book for school. Do future students a favor and express your hatred for the book when you have teacher evaluations. Unfortunately, there are few if any good Music history text books. So, if you have a music degree, know much about Music History and can write a straight-forward, easy to read book, you could make a killing in writing a college Music History book.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
very comprehensive biographies and information about musical masterpieces. Good to have on hand to look up the answers to your questions about famous composers.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a text book I needed for a course, so of course it was ideal for that. That being said, the book is well organized and interestingly written.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Upon given one of the most difficult to read textbooks for a music history class, I found this book to be a true lifesaver! This book is very concise, well-written, and very presentable. The format of every page is presented in such a way that it captures the eye. I love this book!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Cheap compared to college bookstore. Took a while to get it, but worth it! EZ resell for next quarter students.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I know the author of this book and took a class with her. She is quite knowledgable. This book goes well as a compliment to the Western Anthology of Music to expand upon the scores and history. There are many pictures within this book that help to visualize the feel of the time periods and movements in art. It can be useful to see the parallels in music and visual art.
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