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Academics to study The Smiths

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    [font=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Academics study The Smiths[/font]

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    [/font] [font=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif] 28/03/2005 - 09:14:49[/font] morrissey.jpg

    [font=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif] Iconic 80s band The Smiths are to be studied by some of the world’s leading academics during a special conference.

    The famous Indie quartet, credited with putting the ’miserable’ in Manchester, will be analysed, constructed and deconstructed by scholars from around the world during a three-day conference in their home city next week.

    The Smiths were the most influential of Indie bands in the 80s spawning thousands of bequiffed fans in floral shirts, copying frontman Steven Patrick Morrissey.

    They have been described as the quintessential English pop group, with a string of hits bemoaning late-teen angst.

    During the symposium, entitled ’Why Pamper Life’s Complexities’ – a line from the song This Charming Man, academics from across the globe will explore some of lead singer Morrissey and his band’s lyrics and music from the literary and cultural points of view.

    Dr Justin O’Connor, an expert on the Manchester music and cultural scene, said: “The Smiths have had a singular impact on popular culture.

    “They looked like nobody else and sounded like nobody else, and their music had an emotional depth that moved people in a way that no band has managed before or since.

    “In spite of their enormous cultural significance and personal resonance, The Smiths have yet to receive sustained academic attention.

    “This conference aims to put that right and to critically examine what the band meant and continue to mean two decades after their untimely demise.”

    Among the themes addressed at the conference are: gender and sexuality, race and nationality, a sense of place, the imagination of class, aesthetics, fan cultures and musical innovation.

    It takes place at Manchester Metropolitan University on April 8 and 9.[/font]


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