Venerating Angels

  • Clare Hall
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Gender and Education book series (GED)


This chapter draws on two rich examples of male vocal practices, the English cathedral choir tradition and the European castrati, to present a historical view of the cultural fascination with the boy voice. Broad in scope, this chapter encompasses music and choral history, popular culture and media as a means of unpacking the dynamic intersections between gender, class and culture within the particular musical milieu of boys’ choirs. The historical discourses associated with these musical practices permeate current conceptualisations of the symbolic meaning of the ‘choirboy’, and the chapter illustrates that these discourses involve three interrelated cultural narratives of music and masculinity.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Clare Hall
    • 1
  1. 1.Monash UniversityFrankstonAustralia

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