Next Article in Journal
Naming the Mystery: An Augustinian Ideal
Next Article in Special Issue
The Seraphim above: Some Perspectives on the Theology of Orthodox Church Music
Previous Article in Journal
Fully Human and Fully Divine: The Birth of Christ and the Role of Mary
Previous Article in Special Issue
Dominican Chant and Dominican Identity
Article Menu

Export Article

Open AccessArticle
Religions 2015, 6(1), 182-203; doi:10.3390/rel6010182

Elvis’ Gospel Music: Between the Secular and the Spiritual?

Media and Cultural Studies, University of Chester, Warrington WA2 0DB, UK
Academic Editor: Edward Foley
Received: 5 January 2015 / Revised: 5 January 2015 / Accepted: 15 February 2015 / Published: 9 March 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Music and Spirituality)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [237 KB, uploaded 9 March 2015]

Abstract

Do fans sanctify their heroes? In the past, I have argued that Elvis fandom is not a neo-religious practice but that attention to a modified version of Durkheim’s theory of religion can, nevertheless, help to explain it as a form of social interaction. I take that argument further here, first by revealing the ethical and analytical advantages of neo-Durkheimian theory, then by pitting this theory against three aspects of Elvis’ sincere engagement with gospel music. Elvis Presley won three Grammy awards for his gospel albums and was the musician who did most to bring the gospel quartet tradition to the mainstream. His eclectic personal ties to spirituality and religion have become a focus of debate within his fan culture. They offer a set of discursive resources through which to explain the emotional impact and social influence of his music. If star musicians are positioned as centres of attention, what happens when they use their privileged position in the spotlight to offer a “spiritual” message? View Full-Text
Keywords: Elvis; gospel music; fandom; Durkheim; spirituality; totemism Elvis; gospel music; fandom; Durkheim; spirituality; totemism
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

Scifeed alert for new publications

Never miss any articles matching your research from any publisher
  • Get alerts for new papers matching your research
  • Find out the new papers from selected authors
  • Updated daily for 49'000+ journals and 6000+ publishers
  • Define your Scifeed now

SciFeed Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Duffett, M. Elvis’ Gospel Music: Between the Secular and the Spiritual? Religions 2015, 6, 182-203.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics

1

Comments

[Return to top]
Religions EISSN 2077-1444 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert Logo copyright Steve Bridenbaugh/UUA
Back to Top