Music and Boundaries: Columbia Music Scholarship Conference 2013
Call For Papers
The ninth annual Columbia Music Scholarship Conference will be held on March 9, 2013 at Columbia University in the City of New York. Graduate students and recent PhD recipients are invited to submit abstracts for twenty-minute paper presentations related to this year’s theme “Music and Boundaries.” Proposals from scholars in music history, theory, and ethnomusicology, as well as other areas within the humanities and social sciences are welcomed. A principal aim of the conference is to encourage dialogue around and reflection on the boundaries that we, as academics, subscribe to and maintain; those boundaries that not only structure our professional lives, but that also have far-reaching implications beyond the ivory tower. For this reason, interdisciplinary work that challenges the hidebound divisions of the modern university is especially encouraged.
There are countless ways to consider the role of boundaries in the production and consumption of music. And “boundaries” might itself be understood as a shorthand for a host of other, related concepts, both real and imagined, physical and mental: borders, barriers, limits, demarcations, to name just a few. Perhaps the most obvious example is the geographical boundary of place; scholars working in this domain might address issues regarding the circulation, transmission, and migration of music across geopolitical borders. Another approach would be to consider music’s ability to permeate boundaries of the body, as an interface between self and other, collective and individual. Yet another angle might provide a way into critiquing the conceptual boundaries that have traditionally delimited the scope of musicological discourse. The most persistent (and hygienic) of these is perhaps that of the musical work, a boundary that continues to define and protect a (“Western,” “classical,” etc.) musical object. Indeed, the foundational boundary of musicology—between elite music, and its many others—is still in need of critical attention.
Participants are encouraged to conceptualize boundaries as dynamic, contested, and ever-changing. How does music move within, across, and beyond boundaries? Crucial to understanding the flow of music in this sense are a constellation of terms: transmission, translation, circulation, dissemination, diaspora, and migration. Additionally, how might music be thought to change, adapt, co-opt, redraw, negate, and resist boundaries? By imagining ways to think beyond boundaries, the boundary-less, liminal conceptual space appears. Engaging with music on this level might lead to reports on cultures and communities excluded by certain boundaries, the force of which are nevertheless felt if only negatively; how might those occupying positions of alterity and liminality challenge boundaries through their musical practices?
Possible topics include but are not limited to: musical circulation, transmission, and dissemination; migration and diaspora; translation studies; music and nationalism; music and conflict; globalization and localization; boundaries of the body; musical collaboration and resistance; music and identity; music in interdisciplinary dialogue; music, sound, noise and silence; the aesthetic object in relation to historical contextualization; generic boundaries; elite music vis-à-vis its others; disciplinary boundaries; boundaries of culture, society, politics, and class.
Please submit abstracts of no more than 250 words to 2013CMSC@gmail.com by Friday January 18, 2013. Any inquiries can also be made to this email address. Additional information is published online at www.2013CMSC.weebly.com.