SEM Blog: new mission statement

About Sound Matters (https://soundmattersthesemblog.com/) is a blog about making ethnomusicological research and debates accessible to and engaged with the wider public.  Sponsored by the Society for Ethnomusicology, the blog is a peer-reviewed digital publication that emphasizes collaboration and new ways of doing ethnomusicology. Sound Matters provides a platform for young, independent and tenured scholars, inclusive…

Waiting for Aspiring Progressives

by Gavin Lee (Soochow University) I recently decided to revisit the issue of teaching opera in prison again with colleagues. Despite insightful responses by William Cheng and Bonnie Gordon to the widely condemned post “Don Giovanni Goes to Prison” by Pierpaolo Polzonetti (all on the Musicology Now blog, published by the American Musicological Society), it…

Academic flying and climate justice: Toward an inclusive and sustainable ethnomusicology

by Catherine Grant, Aaron Pettigrew, and Megan Collins Earlier this year, SEM members released a Statement entitled “Disciplinary intervention for a practice of ethnomusicology” (available in full on this blog). According to its authors, the Statement is intended as “a declaration of commitment to changing the academic structures that deny many scholars full inclusion in…

Disciplinary intervention for a practice of ethnomusicology

The statement below—signed voluntarily by practitioners of ethnomusicology in April 2017—builds on disciplinary concerns that music and sound scholars past and present have identified. It affirms the need to move beyond narrative debates and toward structural change in music institutions, toward enacting justice. The primary authors of this statement intend it to be a living…

Sean Bellaviti – In search of the Organization of American States 1970s field recording collection in Caracas, Venezuela

Sean Bellaviti   Sporting a baseball cap and sunglasses, I did my best to look inconspicuous as I ascended the wide stairway leading to Venezuela’s national library. It was early 2015, and while seeming more tranquil than I had been led to believe, Caracas must at all times be treated with a double dose of…

Abstracts for Ethnomusicology Vol. 60, No. 2 (Spring/Summer 2016)

Domesticating Otherness: The Snake Charmer in American Popular Culture A.J. Racy University of California, Los Angeles Abstract. Metaphoric allusions to otherness are widely encountered and oftentimes taken for granted. Exploring the use of the snake-charming theme in American popular media, I discuss why and how such a supposedly foreign theme is borrowed, metaphorically adapted, and…