Date of Award

Summer 8-2020

Degree Type


Degree Name



Arts Administration

Major Professor

James C Marchant

Second Advisor

Adam Falik

Third Advisor

Richard Read


Jazz festivals occur in all parts of the world, small cities and metropolises, urban and rural landscapes, stadiums, churches, streets, and abandoned factories. Being a part of the entertainment industry, they have the potential to impact social change. Jazz festivals help us reconsider notions of identity and community, and their communal experience has the potential to undermine dominant social norms. The industry of jazz festivals is based on Black music and has a history of positive and negative social outcomes. Evaluating festivals through the symbolic meaning of music provides an optic into how festivals marginalize and exploit African American cultural contributions. The ethical approach of producing the festivals is meant to alter practice toward recognition of its role in pursuing social justice.


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