UCLA Symposium on Ethnomusicology in Theory and Practice

2 min read

On Friday, May 19, 2017, The UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music presents a symposium and concert in recognition of the career of UCLA Distinguished Professor Timothy Rice, who is retiring in June 2017. Titled “Ethnomusicology in Theory and Practice,” the day-long symposium examines the nature of theorizing in ethnomusicology, and in an evening concert UCLA professors and ensembles perform European classical music, world music, and jazz.

Symposium presenters include Michael BakanJudith BeckerHarris BergerMartin DaughtryMaureen Mahon, Anthony SeegerMark SlobinRuth StoneJane SugarmanJeff Todd TitonThomas Turino, and Deborah Wong.

UCLA Symposium on Ethnomusicology in Theory and Practice

[download program pdf]

Friday, May 19, 2017
Choral Room, Schoenberg Music Building 1325

9:00am—Opening Remarks, Steven Loza, Chair, Department of Ethnomusicology
9:05am—Session 1: What is Music Good For?
Chair: Mark Kligman, UCLA
Respondent: Katherine In-Young Lee, UC Davis

As ethnomusicologists increasingly engage with real-world problems, what might be the effect on ethnomusicological theorizing?

Anthony Seeger, University of California, Los Angeles, emeritus
“Who Is the Study of Music Good for and Why Does the Answer Matter?”
Michael Bakan, Florida State University
“On Representation versus Re-Presentation in Ethnographic Writing: An Argument in Favor of the Latter”
Jane Sugarman, City University of New York Graduate Center
“Theorizing the Ruins of Yugoslavia: Activist and Applied Ethnomusicologies and the Liberal Voice”

10:30am—Coffee Break

11:00am—Session 2: Studying Music or Studying Sound?
Chair: Jessica Schwartz, UCLA
Respondent: Nina Eidsheim, UCLA
Respondent: Shana Redmond, UCLA

As ethnomusicologists expand their purview from the study of music to the study of sound, how might that help them better understand music and sound?

Jeff Todd Titon, Brown University, emeritus
“From Music in Its Sonic Context to Music as Sound: Some Theoretical Implications”
Deborah Wong, University of California, Riverside
“Will Sound Studies Decolonize Ethnomusicology?”
Martin Daughtry, New York University
“Sound Studies Provincializes Music Studies. What Provincializes Sound Studies?”


2:00pm—Session 3: How do ethnomusicologists theorize?
Chair: Daniel Neuman, UCLA
Respondent: Roger Savage

What might ethnomusicology gain from an increased emphasis on comparative studies? What inveterate theoretical problems do ethnomusicologists face, and how might we solve them? How might we frame or reframe our theoretical insights into the nature of music, in general or in particular cases, in ways that might influence thinking in other disciplines?

Ruth Stone, Indiana University
“Comparative Studies in Ethnomusicology from Microanalysis to Big Data”
Harris Berger, Memorial University, Newfoundland
“Others, Dialectics, Horizons: Comparativisms, Work, and Life for Ethnomusicologists”
Maureen Mahon, New York University
“Race in Theory and in Ethnomusicology”

3:30pm—Coffee Break

4:00pm—Session 4: What are the relationships between ethnographic fieldwork and ethnomusicological theorizing?
Chair: Robert Garfias, UC Irvine
Respondent: Timothy Taylor, UCLA

How does theory arise from ethnography? What does the ethnography-theory interface look like? How do ethnomusicologists go from ethnography to theory? In what ways does theory always suffuse ethnography?

Judith Becker, University of Michigan, emerita
“Ethnographic Puzzle to Theoretical Formulation: Transwomen and Burmese Spirit Ceremonies”
Thomas Turino, University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign, emeritus
“You Never Know Where You’re Going Till You Get There: Dialectics of Experience and Theory”
Mark Slobin, Wesleyan University, emeritus
“Confessions of a Theory Skeptic”

5:30pm—Closing Remarks, Timothy Rice, UCLA

“Grand Concert: Celebrating the School’s Musics” will follow the symposium.
7:30pm-9:00pm – Schoenberg Hall
Learn more about the concert