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Perris examines the past and present uses of music as a means for political and social change, overt or disguised. He presents evidence of music as propaganda ranging from Broadway to the official compositions of the totalitarian regimes of Nazi Germany, Soviet Russia, and Communist China, as well as from concert halls to the protest movements of the 1960s. Familiar classics are analyzed, as well as operas of nineteenth-century nationalist composers. Shostakovich, Henze, and Penderecki, as well as Bob Dylan and many rock and roll bands are shown as composers who were adversaries of the state, while others, consciously or not, reinforced the status quo of their particular era. The sensuous encroachment of music in Western religious services is compared and contrasted with the status and use of music in Eastern religions.