Call for Papers | Applications - Part 115

posted by peter on 2007/08/11 12:49

[ Call for Papers | Applications ]

Here's the Reminder, the Deadline is September 1:

The Ninth International Conference of The Department of Musicology and Ethnomusicology (Faculty of Music, University of Arts, Belgrade, Serbia; April 20-23, 2008) will discuss the topic

Based on literary, historical, and cultural approaches, biography and autobiography of musicians include a participation of various disciplines such as political history, music history, sociology, philosophy, literary theory, psychology, ethnology, gender studies, psychoanalysis. (Auto)Biography is constructed under the influence of rhetorical strategies, determined by contemporary ideology and politics, providing wide possibilities for recognizing, investigating, and defining it in the context of musicology discourses.
Here's the Call for Papers:…

Biographies of musicians regarded as distinguished creators marked the early steps in music historiography as a distinct genre. As a matter of fact, since a century before the very definition of the 'Musikwissenschaft' in 1885, biography was one of the keys historiographical, that is, musicological concepts, embracing different theoretical and methodological attitudes. Memoirs, diaries, correspondence, afterwards radio interviews, ethnographic life stories used to be regarded, however, only as a source material. But, since the 1970s, they formed unique autobiographical discourse, overcoming the status of “victim of biography”, a subject of theoretical explications determined by four contracts: social, autobiographical, referential, and the implicit or explicit contract between author and reader (Philippe Le Jeune).
Poststructuralists are focused especially on the question of author in (auto)biographical discourse, establishing the concept of function of the author (M. Foucault), death of the author (R. Barthes), the model of self-presenting for the public (P. Bourdieu) in the frame of social and ideological context. (Auto)Biographical discourse also found significant place in the recent research of memorialism and decolonization (P. Nora). Within folklore studies — cultural anthropology and ethno methodology — this topic is considered in relation to storytelling rights in both oral and written senses (A. Shuman). Consequently, (auto)biography has been a signifier of high-class world, inevitably connected with the question of power. These attitudes certainly provide broad theoretical approaches in (ethno)musicological research too.

Historically speaking, music biography as well as autobiography and fictional music biography were established as an individual genre in 18th century (for instance, John Mainwaring's biography of Handel, 1760; and Forkel's Ueber Johan Sebastian Bachs Leben, Kunst und Kunstwerke, 1802), in the context of musical lexicography and music history, and were defined more clearly in early 19th century (memoirs by Berlioz, 1870, or Wagner, 1870-80, for instance). Romantic authors also founded biography of fictional musicians (one of the paradigmatic example is Wackenroder's Das merkwürdige musikalische Leben des Tonkünstlers Joseph Berlinger, 1797), which had their place in novels like Romain Rolland's. In that way, (auto)biographies of musicians can be regarded as mythologies (H. Blumenberg).

As a reaction against the positivism of the 19th and early 20th century, expressed in Romantic treatment of biography as a key point in creativity via the theory of genius (Anton Schindler, Biographie von Ludwig van Beethoven, 1840; Otto Jahn, W. A. Mozart, 1856-1859; Philipp Spitta, Johann Sebastian Bach, 1873 and 1880; and Max Kalbeck, Johannes Brahms, 1908-1915), the methodological perspective was neglected during the first decades of the 20th century. However, biography regained its status as one of the important musicological discourses, due to cataloguing of source materials in thematic catalogues and critical editions of the works of chosen composers, music lexicons, dictionaries, Denkmäler series, and an increasing discourse on the relation of biography and creativity. Moreover, style-orientated general histories of music were still mainly based on biography and analysis of selected compositions, and (mis)understood composers' credo expressed in their memoirs (or, pseudo-memoirs by D. Šostakovič, for instance) or interviews (I. Stravinsky).

In studies of new or cultural musicology, (auto)biography and other discourses were redefined and reconstructed through applying gender studies, psychoanalysis, and critical theory. Therefore, certain questions are rising as possible perspectives:

  1. the role of music (auto)biography in the concept of general and national music historiography and lexicography or, in wider sense, national identity and forms of cultural memory as self-presentation (through the choice of so-called great composers and their certain works in histories of music, monographs, music dictionaries, critical editions),
  2. question of authenticity (interpretation of archival sources, documents, correspondence, memoirs, interviews, TV documentaries, movies, iconographical presentation of composers or performing artists in the context of more general approaching to the history, either through the 19th-century reconstructing the “truthful facts” or contemporary constructed narrative),
  3. considering works of music through (auto)poetical standpoints and (self)expression, analytical remarks as well as in (auto)biographies in music, construction of (auto)biography, or fictional (auto)biography,
  4. the role of biography in traditional (folk) music studies (biography in a narrow sense, as biography of individual folk musicians, perceived through the relation personal-collective, or, in a wider sense, “biography” of a specific geographic region as a specific music dialect),
  5. theoretical, sociocultural, and axiological aspects of the re-introduction of biography as a methodological perspective in 20th century music historiography as a consequence, or counter movement to dogmatic formalist and structuralist musicology - the invention of an analytical system to repress (auto)biography; aspects of evaluation of and within (auto)biographical discourse in musicology.

The language of the conference is English. It is possible to deliver papers in German, French, Russian, or Serbian too, and the authors are kindly requested to provide translation to English. Each presenter will have 20 minutes for the paper, followed by 10 minutes for discussion. Selected papers presented at the conference will be published in a volume of proceedings. Send your abstract (about 250 words) in English to Tatjana Marković or Vesna Mikić not later than September 1, 2007.

Program Committee:

  • Dr. Tatjana Marković, Belgrade
  • Dr. Mirjana Veselinović-Hofman, Belgrade
  • Dr. Vesna Mikić, Belgrade
  • Dr. Cornelia Szabó-Knotik, Vienna
  • Dr. Antonio Baldassarre, Zürich
  • Mirjana Zakić, Belgrade
  • Sanja Radinović, Belgrade

Various Informations about the 8th conference, concerning Musical Culture and Memory could be found here, here, here, here, here and here.


Senior Editor

Seitenwechsel. Geschichten vom Fußball. Hgg. v. Samo Kobenter u. Peter Plener. Wien: Bohmann 2008, 237 pp.
(Weitere Informationen hier)
Transcarpathica. Germanistisches Jahrbuch Rumänien 3-4/2004-2005. Hgg. v. Andrei Corbea-Hoisie u. Alexander Rubel. Bukarest/Bucuresti: Editura Paideia 2008, 336 pp.
[Die online-Fassung meines Einleitungsbeitrags "Thesen zur Bedeutung der Medien für Erinnerungen und Kulturen in Mitteleuropa" findet sich auf Kakanien revisited (Abstract / .pdf).]
Seitenweise. Was das Buch ist. Hgg. v. Thomas Eder, Samo Kobenter u. Peter Plener. Wien: Bundespressedienst 2010, 480 pp.
(Weitere Informationen hier wie da, v.a. auch do. - und die Rezension von Ursula Reber findet sich hier [.pdf].)
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