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World Music

This guide supports research assignments for World Music classes, as well as any other classes that require research on world music traditions.

Start Here: Encyclopedias Are Great For Overviews

Music Around the World: a Global Encyclopedia

Online encyclopedia with entries on topics ranging from non-Western instruments to distinctive rhythms of music from various countries, this one-stop resource on global music also promotes appreciation of other countries and cultural groups. 

The Garland Encyclopedia of World Music

Print encyclopedia located at the Harrisburg and Lancaster locations.
Classic title for the field of World Music

Example MLA Citation of Garland Encyclopedia of World Music

Definitions (Dictionaries)

The Harvard Dictionary of Music

Wide ranging and reliable, this treasure trove includes entries on all the styles and forms in Western music; comprehensive articles on the music of Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Near East; descriptions of instruments enriched by historical background; and articles that reflect today's beat, including popular music, jazz, and rock.

The Oxford Dictionary of Music

Offers broad coverage of a wide range of musical categories spanning many eras, including composers, librettists, singers, orchestras, important ballets and operas, and musical instruments and their history. 

Guide Creator

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Lisa Weigard

Subjects: Faculty, Lancaster