The work of French musicologist, ethnologist and critic Andre Schaeffner (1895– 1980) grew out of his first organological studies of the history of Western classical instruments in the late 1920s and encapsulated in his wide-ranging Origine des instruments de musique, which captures his studies in Paris between 1931 and 1936.
Almost 80 years after its first publication, the scientific relevance and influence of Schaeffner’s primary hypothesis—that the origins of music can be traced to the human body through gesture, dance and the movements in the use of musical instruments and their ancestor tools—remains pertinent in fields which have returned to informed speculative and empirical research on the origins of music.
This first English edition is accompanied by editorial footnotes and introductory texts, and the influence of Schaeffner’s thought on several generations of musicologists makes his work an essential piece of reading for ethnomusicologists, music psychologists, organologists and musicologists interested in the history of their field.
Book published in the Series Classic European Studies (Routledge) in the Science of Music funded by Irène Deliège - Fondation Roi Baudouin. Series Editors : John Sloboda, Irene Deliège, John Rink, Reinhard Kopiez et Valérie Dufour