"A Place for everything, and everything in its place" — the (ab)uses of music ecology

Brent Keogh, Ian Collinson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Since the 1950s, the biological term ecology has been imported and applied to a wide range of human cultural practices, environments, and contexts. The ecology trope has found a resonance within the academy, and has long been used across the social sciences, to contextualize aspects of human social and cultural life. This paper examines the application of ecology and ecological concepts to our apprehension and understanding of music, an application that may be traced back almost 50 years. Here we discuss a number of issues regarding the appropriation of ecological principles to articulate and explain human musical activity. In this paper, we critically assess the ramifications of framing the relationship between people, their music, and their world, in ecological terms.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-15
Number of pages15
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2016


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