The Musical Eulogy and other functions of funeral music

Janieke Bruin-Mollenhorst

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


This article examines the function of music during contemporary funerals in the
Netherlands. Using a performance-based approach, this article shows that music
adds to the ritual dimension of contemporary funerals, by relating the music to
the funeral itself, the deceased person’s identity, and to emotions. Zooming in on
the music that in contemporary personalized funerals is selected because it is—one
way or another—related to the deceased, it will be shown that the lyrical content of
this music is less important than social and emotional aspects. Theoretically, the
concept of the musical eulogy is introduced as a hermeneutic tool to examine
music in ritualized contexts.
Original languageEnglish
JournalOmega: Journal of death and dying
Publication statusPublished - 2018


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