A flexible musical identity, chapter 7, written by Ryan Dohoney, is a written work that partially shows the life of Julius Eastman, an African American musician. It describes the hardships Eastman had to go through due to him being a person of color and his efforts to make music that would bring together diverse networks. Work with a similar theme is The queer composition of America’s sound by Nadine Hubbs, with chapter 1 discussing the potential of genderqueer artists. Both of the written pieces serve well to show the efforts and struggles of racial and gender minorities to gain artistic recognition.
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Dohoney starts his chapter with a retelling of Eastman’s autobiography, and it serves to familiarize the reader with the musician. Eastman is described as someone who devoted his whole life to traditional types of music but is willing to actively explore and experiment with other music genres and art forms. Some of his music pieces had politically-incorrect names and themes, which could spark discussions and debates. Dohoney validly observes that Eastman’s free way of composing bolsters the racial minority movements.
Hubbs, in her book, describes an opera, Four Saints in Three Acts, and attributes its cultural significance to its openness in expressing the artistic potential of genderqueer artists. Premiered in 1934, artistic works describing gender minorities at such a scale were virtually unheard of before. Hubbs also correlates the cultural significance with the quality of the opera, which is what makes her point of view more valid.
Both works contain ideas that art made by minorities has high cultural significance. Yet, it seems that neither Dohoney nor Hubbs provide details on the significance of it for the minority movements. It is unclear whether there is any correlation between Eastman’s music, Four Saints in Three Acts, and the actions of the minority movements. Another question is how, if in any way, they have affected the societal views on racial and gender minorities. While Dohoney and Hubbs provide valid points, the subject could potentially be expanded upon to include society’s perspective on racial and gender minorities.