Thesis submission ID 955 | created | last updated

Emma Arthur, Art Music and Music Education in Irish Convent Schools, 1830-1900: A Preliminary Survey and Interpretation of the Primary Sources
MMus, University College Dublin, 2023

Volumes, pp.: 1 vol (181pp.)  Wordcount: 18000
Supervisor(s): Harry White

General specialism: Musicology
Historical timeframe: 1830-1900
Key terms, concepts: archival studies; pedagogy, Irish art music; music education in Ireland; female music-making
Key terms, places: Ireland
Key terms, institutions: Mercy Congregational archives; Dominican Archives; Loreto Central and Irish Province Archives; Presentation Sisters Congregational Archives; Dominican Convent Cabra.

Within the extensive history of convent education in Ireland lies an untapped musical culture which has yet to be fully explored. While the existence of music as a subject within convent curricula has long been established, there has not yet been a musicological enquiry into the implementation of music in convent schools and its function within convent education. The objective of this research is to provide a preliminary report and inspection of a very large number of hitherto unexamined primary sources which illustrate the Art music traditions of convents and convent schools in nineteenth-century Ireland. It will centre around the archives of two convent orders, the Sisters of Mercy and Dominican Sisters, both of which actively engaged in education during this period and whose archival materials exemplify an active engagement with music within their respective schools.
The various primary sources found in both archives will be discussed with particular attention paid to the musical practices and traditions they illustrate. This will be followed by a more in-depth analysis of the musical traditions of Mercy and Dominican schools as they are presented in the primary materials. Such findings will then be discussed with reference to the educational principles and practices of respective convent schools, the implementation and function of musical education, as well as some of the results of such instruction. This will culminate in an examination of the significance of these Mercy and Dominican sources and the musical practices they illustrate within the broader mission of nineteenth-century convent education and the role of music in reflecting and contributing to a broader Catholic culture in nineteenth-century Ireland.
Thesis submission ID 955