Lee Caplan's Newest Publication

Pitt Jazz Studies PhD student and teaching fellow Lee Caplan's "Jazz Historiography, Eurocentric Philosophy, and the Problem of Hegel and Aristotle" has been published in the January 2022 issue of Jazz Education in Research and Practice. Exploring diverse topics of jazz scholarship and its applications to pedagogy, the journal provides a forum for interaction and exchange between researchers and practitioners grounded in scholarship. The editors particularly welcome articles that provide models, resources, and effective techniques for the teaching and learning of the art form. 

Abstract: "This study presents a methodology for jazz educators to explore the limitations of Eurocentric knowledge in jazz settings through a case study on Aristotelian/Hegelian logic formulation in jazz historiography. I demonstrate that Aristotelian/Hegelian reasoning and white racism/sexism produced reductive exclusionary definitions in early jazz writing. To make this argument, I turn to Aristotelian syllogisms and teleology, and Hegel’s “ideal” subject. Alongside illustrating a methodology for bringing Western philosophy into dialogue with jazz historiography in classroom settings, I then present concluding remarks towards extending theoretical work by proposing to flip subject-object epistemological relations in European philosophical discourse. By looking at early jazz writing, we observe white racist/sexist paradigms and how Eurocentric logic justified these social maladies. Even in jazz history accounts that celebrate Black genius, it is through the problematic discourse of evolution, high art, and teleology that grants these accounts their social prestige. Investigating the boundaries of Eurocentric paradigms in jazz historiography improves our theoretical conceptions and offers ways to move forward and address these problematic issues that persist." 

The Journal is available online through JSTOR. Congratulations, Lee!