The fiddle on the island : fiddling tradition on Prince Edward Island

Hornby, James John (1982) The fiddle on the island : fiddling tradition on Prince Edward Island. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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    Available under License - The author retains copyright ownership and moral rights in this thesis. Neither the thesis nor substantial extracts from it may be printed or otherwise reproduced without the author's permission.
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Abstract

This study is an attempt to document fiddling tradition in the Canadian province of Prince Edward Island. In particular, it examines the most important contemporary development in fiddling, the revitalistic Prince Edward Island Fiddlers’ Society. The objective is to assess the Society against a background of local history and traditions, and with a knowledge of fiddling traditions and studies from Scotland, Ireland, England, and North America. -- A descriptive outline of Prince Edward Island fiddling traditions is extracted from a variety of historical and contemporary sources, based on library and field research. From this a pattern of decline and revival emerges, as fiddling and old-time dancing are seen in the context of local social and musical ecologies. These contexts were changed by many factors - fashions, population shifts, and technological innovations among them. Among the important technological changes was the coming of radio, and the relationship of fiddlers and provincial radio stations is explored in some detail for the period 1923-1958. Next, the influence of the Scottish Canadian fiddlers of Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, upon Prince Edward Island fiddlers is outlined from the mid-1930s to the present. This influence, and the related propagation of musical literacy by the Fiddlers’ Society are seen in relation to the concepts of traditional music” that animate said Society. The origins of the Fiddlers’ Society (to which the author belongs) are traced and its activities described. -- Finally, the Society is evaluated in terms of its uses of tradition and the Island's cultural present, and the importance of local tradition is advocated for this group and other Island fiddlers, and society generally.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/5490
Item ID: 5490
Additional Information: Bibliography: leaves 195-208; Discography: leaves 209-211.
Department(s): Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of > Folklore
Date: 1982
Date Type: Submission
Geographic Location: Canada--Prince Edward Island
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Fiddling; Fiddlers--Prince Edward Island; Folk dance music--Prince Edward Island

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