Volume 10, Number 1 (June, 2001)
In this issue:
Gender Research in Music Education: Beyond Women and Girls, Men and Boys
2. Conference Report
Being “the GENDER guy”: My first RIME conference, Adam Adler
3. GEMS Update
4. Articles & Essays
4.1 Why Boys Limit Musical Choices, Scott D. Harrison
4.2 ”Musings”, Ursula Rempel
5. Member Research & Creative Activities
5.1 Ruth M. Robertson
5.2 Ursula Rumpel
5.3 Andra McCartney
5.4 Elizabeth Keathley
6. News & Conferences
6.1 The Women’s Philharmonic
6.2 Feminist Theory and Music 6: Confluence and Divide
6.3 The Stefan George Conference
6.4 Ruth Crawford Seeger: Modernity, Tradition, and the Making of American Music
6.5 National Festival of Women’s Music
6.6 The Marquette University Women’s Studies Program
7. JHRME Table of Contents
Gender Research in Music Eudcation: Beyond Women and Girls, Men and Boys
Elizabeth Gould, Boise State University
Last week, I attended a dinner celebrating my sister’s 50th birthday as well as her 15 years with the Ms. Foundation for Women. Recently named Executive Director of the Foundation, Sara was honored for her work developing economic opportunities for women across the country. I was proud, amazed, and humbled as each guest spoke about their connection with Sara in terms of how she had touched their lives and their work, and the differences that she had made. The youngest woman, still in her early 20′s, described Sara as a role model for her and the next generation of feminists whom she represents. Sara, for her part, responded with humor and warmth. The affection and caring shared by these women was clear. Soon everyone went back to eating their meals, and discussion at each table again turned to their work: the work of feminists, the work of feminism.
As I listened to their current and future projects and goals, I thought of the progress that has been made-at least in the law and the consciousness of individuals, and realized, too, how very much farther we have yet to go. In music and music education, we now have affirmative action protection in hiring-brought to us by feminism (as the Ms. Foundation points out)-blind orchestral auditions-brought to us by feminism-movement toward pay equity-brought to us by feminism-increased sensitivity about gender equity in curriculum, learning materials, and pedagogical practices-brought to us by feminism-and deepened commitment to eliminating sexism at all levels and areas-brought to us by feminism. However, in music education and music, we also still lack equity in hiring practices, we still lack parity among orchestral musicians, we still lack fair and adequate compensation, we still lack inclusive curricula, materials, and pedagogies, and we still lack an egalitarian profession and society. Further, we tend to lag behind other academic disciplines in these areas.
The question that is raised more and more often, and is even beginning to be addressed by the Ms. Foundation, is the role of men and boys in terms of feminism. What does it mean for them? How can they be included? What should we do with/for/about them? I hear some version of these questions every time we have a public discussion about anything related to gender research in music education. The Ms. Foundation, in an effort to control this discussion, will apparently address some of these questions, even as women and girls remain their primary focus. Co-opting groups with power long has been an accepted ploy for gaining more power. In doing this, however, we succumb to another ploy: the one that diverts our attention and energy from our work to issues beyond our interests. An outcome of this is that we lose sight of feminism (creation of an egalitarian society in which no group is more powerful than another). Instead of attending to discussions that are not our own or co-opting power that originally resulted in our oppression, I would suggest that we use our energy to envision our profession in terms of feminist ideals.
What is the role of gender research in this? In terms of Roberta Lamb’s (MENC, 2000) categories of gender research, I would suggest that we need to move beyond the subconscious (awareness) and subtle (equity) levels, and focus on the subversive (change) level. This will require research in the profession about and for women and girls that goes beyond positivist methods and values, and takes risks in both conception and experience. I think that asking about the place of men and boys in this research is the wrong question. It assumes and accepts the modern dualisms of men/women and boys/girls. It suggests that somehow in the last 150 or so years of music education research in the U.S. that men and boys have been neglected or at least have not been adequately understood. I suggest that we think about these issues in other terms.
Using standpoint epistemology, I have argued (Philosophy of Music Education Review, 2/2, 1994) that viewpoints from the margins are more comprehensive and reveal more of the total landscape than do those from the center, suggesting that we see best when we account for the diverse intersections of our positionalities. Not only difficult, this may be impossible given current research methodologies. As we develop research methodologies that are more flexible and inclusive, less powerful in a positivist sense, we create opportunities to view glimpses of the profession as it currently is, and as we would prefer it to be. I seriously doubt that this will occur as the result of devoting attention to men and boys, particularly at the expense of women and girls. Rather, I would suggest that it is more likely to occur as the result of focus on the goals and values of feminism and how they may be most likely realized through innovative and embodied research. The Ms. Foundation is constrained by economic concerns. As researchers, we are constrained only by our passion.
Please plan to attend the 11th annual meeting of GRIME at the conference Feminist Theory and Music 6: Confluence and Divide to be held at Boise State University July 5-8, 2001 in Boise, Idaho. For more information, see the conference website at http://music.boisestate.edu/ftm6/ or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com. I hope to see you there!
Being “the GENDER guy”: My first RIME conference
Adam Adler, University of Toronto, Peel District School Board
I really wasn’t sure what to expect when I submitted a paper to the 2001 RIME conference at Exeter University; it was my first conference. As a teacher researcher, the submission guideline for papers dealing with theory-to-practice was a perfect fit. And given the substantial number of gender resources I’ve had from English researchers, I hoped my paper would be welcome. The acceptance email was a happy surprise – HEY, somebody wants to hear me speak! Thus I began my preparations to fly over.
I had been to England before – I lived and taught there for a few years. Thus, my first few days there were spent with former pupils and teaching colleagues, mostly in pub. Now that I think of it, I essentially spent the long weekend before the conference drinking! My fondest memory of this trip is sitting in a village pub with 10 former students – 3 of who are now music teachers, and the rest who continue to perform despite other careers – sight reading folk music I’d just edited, entertaining the pub. THIS is why we teach music.
What struck me most about England this time was the impact of the foot-and-mouth crisis. All footpaths, country parks, rights of way through farmers’ fields, and many rural riverbanks were closed. This severely limited my movements; I couldn’t take the long country walks I’d been so fond of; a sad time.
Thanks to an excellent rail system (and the reason we hardly have any trains in North America now is WHAT?) my voyage south to Exeter was easy. I arrived at St. David’s station without directions to the university, totally befuddled. A professor from Mexico, who, seeing my befuddledness, must have decided I was an academic, rescued me. She had directions, and we shared a cab. I arrived on campus and registered and settled in my ample room. A freezing cold shower later (I won’t even discuss the physical implications), I was refreshed and ready to mingle.
I think the greatest asset of this conference was the ample time allotted to socializing. Each day there were coffee and drinks receptions and extended mealtimes, where we were encouraged to move about and meet people. Meeting new people was not hard – one only had to look down at participant’s nametags to discern their name and home location. Titles (Dr., Prof., etc.) were omitted purposefully, to put the participants – professors and students – on a more equal footing. Every time a mutual reading of nametags occurred, at least a brief introduction of research areas was exchanged. As my name began with ‘A’, my abstract was at the beginning of the syllabus; people therefore seemed familiar with my work. “Oh, so YOU’RE the GENDER guy,” they would say. Is this fame, or notoriety? These informal exchanges lead to longer discussions of all manner of interesting topics, as other people at your table were pulled into the debate. Some friendships were renewed and new ones begun.
The keynotes and presentations varied in their interest and relevance to the profession. I found an unequal representation of papers dealing with music technology and composition, with almost no representation of papers on the teaching of performance. I was also surprised to find that, while the submission guideline had been for papers which dealt with theory to practice, many papers never made it past theory (some weren’t even that). I concluded that the greater the presenter’s seniority, and the further removed from actual music making and music teaching, the less likely that their paper would have anything to do with practice.
I quickly detected a negative view of practice-based research; this was addressed in a metaphorical talk on practitioners and researchers as separate or unified dancers, given by Iris Yob and Estelle Jorgensen. In the discussion which followed their presentation, my request for them to directly address the issue of teachers-as-researchers was quickly sloughed off; it was only at the persistence of several of my co-participants that the issue was actually discussed at all.
Despite the omission of titles from our nametags, my place in the unstated hierarchy was becoming clear: I was a Ph.D. student, NOT a professor, and so my research was not as valuable as that done by professors to maintain tenure; as a continuing classroom teacher, my research was of secondary value to the more philosophical, esoteric, big-worded stuff which left myself and some of my colleagues feeling slow and out of the loop. (In hindsight, it’s not that we were slow – it’s that some of these papers weren’t actually about ANYTHING!) While I shall write more on this in a later paper, it is clear to me that this stance is the academy’s way of protecting it’s ownership of knowledge; for, if teachers could do research, then why would we need the academy?
So ends my adventures in Exeter. Please don’t get me wrong – the overall experience was enjoyable and valuable. It should be noted that organizer Sarah Hennessy did an exemplary job in planning this event, and made the participants feel most welcome. The relaxed atmosphere and well-planned social times and entertainment events allowed me to make important contacts and a few friends. In meeting colleagues from Queen’s University, Canada, I discovered what appears to be a “Canadian music education research sensibility.” I learned English folk dancing. I have become re-energized to complete my doctoral research. But most importantly, I have renewed my dedication to practice-based research as the solution to practice-based problems. And I now look forward to future conferences in Exeter and elsewhere with greater confidence and awareness.
Announcing A New Inter-disciplinary E-Journal
Gender, Education, Music and Society
G.E.M.S. is a peer-reviewed, on-line journal that explores the myriad intersections between gender, education, music and society. Emphasis is on the ways in which music teaching and learning can be used to re-dress and eliminate inequalities brought about through ideologies of domination by creating an open-ness to musical experience that promotes access to all. (And, thus by extension, also the ways in which music teaching and learning have not been transformative in the past). Gender will be approached, not as male or female, but as a continuum of possibilities sustained by socially and historically constructed notions of masculinity and femininity that interact in complex, often competing and contradictory ways. A wide variety of methodological (historical, ethnographic, philosophical, sociological, etc.) and inter-disciplinary orientations will be featured, with contributors encouraged to make use of the variety of creative options presented by the electronic medium.
|Elizabeth Gould, Co-Editor Egould@boisestate.edu||Music Education|
|Eleanor Stubley, Co-Editor
|Philosophy, Music Education|
|Feminist Theory, Music Education|
Submissions are currently being sought in the following categories:
Features: In-depth discussion (2000 – 4000 words) of a particular issue or research project that explores a topic addressing a connection between music and gender in an educational context. Music teaching and learning need not be restricted to traditional school settings, and may be considered to include any level of instruction, including professional studies in musicology, performance, theory, etc., as well as innovative or unique ideas, practices, and/or settings reflecting different musical traditions and approaches.
Pedagogical Spotlights: Shorter, more informal articles (800 – 2500 words) that identify an issue requiring further study or that illustrate a particular pedagogical application having the potential to re-dress inequalities of current educational practices. In the case of the latter, articles should provide a general description of the pedagogical application that is sufficiently detailed to allow others to adapt it to their own teaching situation, as well as a statement of the guiding principle behind the application (as appropriate).
Reviews: Short articles (800 – 1200 words) reviewing a book, web site, software application, or other resource relevant to gender and music in an educational context.
Reader Notes: Notes and letters ( 500 – 1000 words) responding to a feature or pedagogical spotlight in the previous issue. (this will be on the web site, but not in the call per se).
The Editorial Board strongly encourages potential authors to consult with a member of the board before developing a feature article, pedagogical spotlight, or review. The Editorial Board works cooperatively with authors to plan and develop each issue, so early notification of interest will help facilitate the process.
All submissions should be forwarded in electronic format to Co-Editor, Eleanor Stubley at firstname.lastname@example.org. Authors are encouraged to consider web layout in preparing the article. In this medium, the screen, rather than the page, forms the canvas for writing. Long scrolls of unbroken text can intimidate readers and minimize communication. Authors should therefore develop articles in clear sections and with relevant sub-headings. Authors are also encouraged to make use of the variety of creative options mixing word, sound, and image made possible by the electronic medium.
Submissions should include a 150 word abstract at the beginning and a 100-word biography of the author at the end. Notes/citations should be included at the end of the article in APA format. The Columbia Guide to Online Style offers examples for the citing of online sources. The Chicago Manual of Style should be consulted for all other matters.
Submissions should use of one of the following formats: Microsoft Word for Windows (version 97 or later); ASCII text, or HTML. Graphical images should be submitted in one of the following formats: Windows bitmap, GIF, or JPEG.
Final Date for Submission for Fall Issue: August 15, 2001. (for call that goes out now)
Deadlines for Submission: August 15; January 15.
The policy of G.E,M.S. is that authors will retain copyright to their materials. All published articles and reviews will carry the notation ” ? DATE by Author (author’s email address). The right to make additional exact copies, including this notice, for personal and classroom use, is granted. All other forms of distribution and copying require permission of the author.
An initial report on some exploratory research into issues of participation by boys in musical activities. Presented by Scott D Harrison at Australian Education Assembly April 6, 2001.
To music teachers, it’s been a familiar sight. In Concert bands, girls play the flute and boys play brass and percussion. Clarinets are probably played by girls and saxophones are played by members of both sexes. French Horns, likewise. In Stage Bands or (Big Bands), most members have been boys, though a few girls play saxophone. In our school orchestras, there are boys playing the double bass and maybe the ‘cello. Sometimes boys might play the violin, but only if they are really good and don’t learn through school – imagine having to carry an instrument like that to school – no way! In choirs, of course, the problem has been there for years – not enough boys! In the single sex environment, there can be serious difficulties for music teachers.
There are exceptions – there are boys who sing in choirs and play flute. There are girl brass players and percussionists. The data tells us that these are exceptions. Of the 903 secondary students I surveyed in South East Queensland last year, 96% of flute players were female, almost 92% of the singers were female and 74% of the violinists were female, while 90% of tuba players and 80% of trombonists were male.
The problem of sex-stereotyped musical behaviours has been the subject of research for over twenty years. In 1978, Abeles and Porter found that there is a masculine-feminine continuum of instrument choice. In their study, tertiary students were asked to place instruments on a continuum from most feminine to most masculine. They found flute and violin to be on the feminine end and trombone and drums on the masculine end. Given the advances in feminism since that time, one could expect some change in this data. In 1992, a similar study by Delzell and Leppla reflected almost identical results. Last year, over 73% of tertiary students I surveyed indicated that flute was feminine; over 80% thought that trombone and drums were masculine. From this it is fairly safe to conclude that the stereotyping of instruments is still very much part of our culture. Beyond this, there is also some evidence to support the view that singing is a “girls” domain and, to a certain extent, jazz and rock are the domain of males.
Things are changing – more girls are beginning to play brass instruments and percussion. They are even having a go at playing jazz. The boys, however, are still playing the trumpet, trombone, drums and guitars. They are still not playing the flute and they are still resisting singing in choirs. Clarinet is O.K., as long as it leads to playing something cool like the saxophone. Singing is acceptable sometimes too – as long as it’s loud: in a band or in a stage show or something similar.
There is little doubt that both girls and boys suffer as a result of the stereotyping of musical instruments. Girls have been underrepresented in the profession fo r years. For example, the history of western music that is commonly taught includes very few references to women. There is still a long way to go in ensuring some kind of gender equity in our musical world. As Mead (1962) stated “any art is much richer when it is practiced by both sexes.” By highlighting the plight of boys, I am in no way undervaluing the plight of girls but boys’ inability to take on non-stereotypical musical activities can have far reaching implications. In many respects, however, both boys and girls undervalue music.
Keith Swanwick (1988) demonstrated clearly how students (male and female) view participation in music. Between the ages of 8 and 15, music was the subject that exhibited the single greatest decline in interest, excepting religion . In Queensland, in 1996, 72% of primary students took part in a choir, band dance group or art display, while 44.5% of secondary students reported involvement (Ainley 1996, p. 77). This data represents the lowest participation rates per capita in Australia. The data of Ainley and Swanwick also tells us that there is an issue with the transition into secondary schooling that effects student involvement.
Students are spending their time engaging in other activities. The Australian Bureau of Statistics figures from 2001 indicate almost 100% of them are watching T.V., almost 70% are playing electronic or computer games, almost 60% are playing sport and 30% are involved in cultural pursuits. Of those involved in cultural pursuit, the ratio of girls to boys is 2:1. Boys seem to be spending their time playing sport, or playing video games or computer games.
Why? The positive role of music can play in society has been well documented since the time of Plato, who considered the study of music to be analogous to moral order – music could better the soul. Some argue that in the history of aesthetics, all any aesthetician has done is to make minor changes to Platonic thought. Last century, Swanwick (1992, p. 50) stated “the special function of the arts is to illuminate, to transform and ultimately to make life worth living”. Colling (1996, p. 56) tells us that men might find inspiration in the vehicles of self-expression: (instrumental) music, dance, writing, painting, singing and the like.
If music is so good for men, why aren’t more boys taking music in school? For those who are involved, why are their behaviours limited? Why is there resistance to singing in choirs and why are girls expanding their horizons while boys are stuck playing much the same instruments they always have.
The history of boys’ non-involvement in certain musical activities in Australia can be traced back to Bartle (1958) who found that at least half of the choirs is his sample of 474 schools were not using senior boys . In other countries, the central problem can be traced back much further. Koza (1993, 1994) studied musical activities at the turn of last century in U.S, finding choirs that consisted of 60 sopranos, 10 altos, 2 basses and no tenors. In 1993, Green (p. 248) found that “boys and girls tend to restrict themselves to certain musical activities for fear of being accused of some sort of musical transvestism” Girls, however, are demonstrating a willingness to cross the gender divide. Gates also found this in 1989: girls appear to adopting social values traditionally associated with males. Mahoney (1998, p.48) concurs: Teachers report that girls are increasingly acting in a way conventionally associated with particular forms of masculinity. This has two possible effects – girls may end up with the same reluctance as boys and our music programs may be bereft of singers and players of “feminine” instruments. The second possible effect is that girls will hold their ground and assume the instruments associated with the masculine. It would appear that the latter is the phase through which we are currently moving.
Why are boys restricting their behaviours? If you ask them, they won’t always tell you. Fortney, Boyle and Carbo (1993) studied 990 band players in Florida finding that 90% of flautists were female and over 85% of brass players were male. Fortney et al also asked what the students’ least preferred instruments might be. 83% of male respondents choose the flute, while 78% of girls indicated a lower brass instrument. These students were asked the reason for their choices. Only 3% of respondents indicated a gender related reason for their choice. Fortney et al (1993, p. 38) concluded that “regardless of the reasons given, males still tend to play instruments that are considered masculine and females tend to choose instruments that are considered feminine”.
I replicated this research last year and some of the results were discussed earlier. The instruments students would least like to play showed some shift in thinking. Flute was considered the least desirable instrument by both sexes, followed by violin. The trend of the female students heading towards male domains reported by Gates and Mahoney was perhaps beginning to become evident in this data. Students in this survey were also asked why they had chosen their favourite instruments. Students referred to “sound of the instrument” as their most significant reason, followed by the “difficulty of the instrument”. Similar responses were elicited with regard to their least favourite instrument. A small number of boys, in responding to this, gave the following responses:
“It’s too high” (violin)
“It’s too scratchy” (violin)
Furthermore, boys that did not wish to play the flute commented:
“It’s a girl’s instrument”
“It’s a pansy instrument”
“It’s weak and very girly”
Examples of similar talk could be found in the work of Green (1993 and 1997), Koza (1993) and Hanley (1998). In one of Green’s surveys, there were fifty flautists and not one of them was a boy. Teachers in Green’s survey allude to a gendered view of some musical activities:
“Boys still feel more pulled to sports activities and some still suffer torments form other boys about music being sissy” and “There is much peer pressure amongst boys that music still has a sissy stigma. Boys that do have the character to resist the pressure tend to achieve highly”
Essentially her findings demonstrate that boys succumb to heavy peer pressure and that certain activities are to be avoided because they are seen to be “sissy” and “unmacho”. In reflecting on her earlier research, Green (1997, p. 185) said that for a boy to be involved in slow music or in music that is associated with the classical style in the school – to join a choir, to play a flute – involves taking a risk with his symbolic masculinity.
In many respects Hanley replicated Green’s study in Canada in 1998, with similar results. Some of her responses were
“singing is viewed as a feminine activity – boys who engage in singing are feminine by implication” and “boys don’t sing because they are hung up on the image that boys don’t sing and those who do are gay or sissies or weak or whatever”
With regard to participation in ensembles and specific styles of music, Hanley suggested that “some girls want to be like boys. Boys, however do not want to be like girls” This appears to support the views of Gates and Mahoney. As result of this shift, “more girls are joining traditionally male ensembles like stage bands, while boys are not flocking in great numbers to choir”. Like Green, she found classical music was considered too feminine, because according to one respondent, “it is too slow and boring for boys.
Koza’s research looked at singing. Singing is not considered a masculine activity, even in Koza’s study of music at the turn of last century. The breaking voice is given as one possible explanation. The changed voice could be viewed as the embodiment of masculinity, but only if men can sing the low parts, hence the lack of tenors. Singing in a high voice may bring one’s masculinity into question. Koza concluded that the reticence to sing is based on “discursive binaries that construct females, femininity and homosexuality in the undesirable other category” (1994, p. 50).
This binary view of gender appears to be that which is most frequently subscribed to. As we know, in any binary, there is a positive pole (in this case, the masculine) and the opposite pole, to which everything else belongs. According to the dominant code of masculinity (as defined not only by society but by any number of researchers including Connell, Lingard, Mahoney, Gilbert, Kenway and others) any thing that could be in any way construed as being un-masculine is suspect. Society’s view of masculinity is constructed through historical means and through the reinforcement of small, but significant biological differences. There should be no misunderstanding here. The biological essentialist view is not being endorsed here. The biological model used to explain gender difference is inadequate, but biology is not irrelevant. Biology must not be used as an excuse for behaviours, or as the sole reason for them, or as an irreversible given. It needs to be seen, along with many other factors, as contributing to gender.
Colling (1992) points to our history as contributing to our view of masculinity or what we might term “mateship.” He pinpoints our convict past, the Gold Rush of the 1850s, the two World Wars and the sexual revolution of the 1960s as significant moments in our short history.
Our role models and national celebrations across over two hundred years of European settlement have been unusual: Ned Kelly, Gallipoli, Eureka Stockade and Waltzing Matilda. These embody the cultural hero – fearlessness, contempt for authority and hardship. These two dimensional roles are now reinforced by our media who promote actors, sports stars and business men. There is no room for the uncertain, loving, creative man. Men are often portrayed as being unable to express themselves. Historical conditions were not conducive to displays of singing and dancing. Mates did not allow such things to take place. If the code of mateship is broken, the full fury of male condemnation descends of the guilty party. The most crucial way in which this happens is homophobic accusations. Most men, says McLean (1985, p. 294) know the fear of being labelled a “poofter” at any sign of difference, particularly in the expression of emotion or weakness.
The word “poofter”, it seems, is first introduced in the middle years of primary school and is not sexual in connotation at this time. Being un-masculine in this way is not necessarily being feminine, but rather being in opposition to the accepted view of masculinity. The issue here is not about homosexuality, it is about characteristics and behaviours. The homophobic labels gain sexual meaning in the secondary school, at the transition into Year 8 when older boys are responsible for inducting younger boys, hence one of the reasons for the change in participation rates of students in the secondary school. Of all the terms used in verbal bullying and sexual harassment, it is the most serious, damaging and long lasting, because of the stigma attached to it.
Name calling of this nature typically takes place in secluded locations, on the way to and from school and on the sports field. Rigby (1996, p. 15) reports that over 80% of secondary students and 90% of primary students reported sex-based name-calling and that it is almost equally true of both sexes. Anecdotal reports from teachers estimate that it is prevalent across all age groups and it is particularly problematic among boys in the transition from primary to secondary school.
The most recent research in this field comes from David Plummer (2000) who describes homophobic behaviour in this way: The non-conformists are stigmatised because they do not measure up to the collectively authorised standards of masculinity. Those who do not measure up are placed in the “undesirable other” part of the binary. Amongst those in this category are those who are weak, gentle, soft, emotional, studious or not part of the team.
Critchley (2000, p. 26) found that this form of bullying may lead to isolation and ultimately depression, which we know can affect a young person’s thinking processes, education and employment opportunities and their ability to cope.
Sustained homophobic targeting is thought to contribute significantly to youth suicide. Australia is one of the four top nations for youth suicide (West 2000). Cantor et al (1998) report increased suicide rates (up to four times as many deaths) in the 15 – 24 age bracket for males since 1969. The notion that suicide is the result of masculine culture is supported by Colling, as discussed earlier and Patience (1992, p. 58) who finds the historical development of “hard culture” through the harsh treatment of aborigines, sadism inherent in the convict system.
Musicians, particularly those who do not play the accepted “masculine” instruments, are the targets of bulling in this way. It is no surprise that when we examine the “feminine” instruments and activities, they are higher in pitch, smaller in size and generally quieter. The generic terms used earlier for those activities that belonged in the “undesirable other” category included weak, gentle, soft and emotional. The correlations are fairly clear.
The fact that some male musicians continue to play “feminine” instruments can be explained in a number of ways. Kemp and Bruce (1985) studied the personality traits of musicians and offer the suggestion that singers exhibited a bias towards extroversion and adjustment, traits that probably helped to overcome any adverse effects of engaging in non-stereotypical behaviour. Kemp also found that children who pursue music into and beyond adolescence were found to be in possession of a kind of personal androgyny. This allows them to disregard socio-cultural expectations and maintain the necessary high motivation required in music, regardless of social and personal cost.
At this stage in the research I would propose a two-fold solution: that we cautiously treat the symptoms and aggressively attack the cause. In treating the symptoms, I am advocating an examination of best practice: what is working for our boys in schools? To that end, I am currently undertaking case studies of schools in which some of these issues have been successfully addressed. While this aspect of the research is in it’s infancy, one of the consistent messages from schools has been the importance of leadership and role models among staff and students. Another issue has been the choice of appropriate repertoire.
Caution needs exercised in treating the symptoms because there is a danger that some practices can lead to further embedding of popular masculine stereotypes. Getting the football team singing in the choir, for example, may only reinforce the tendency to consider one type of masculinity as being the only appropriate type.
In advocating the process of addressing the symptoms in the short term, the long- term problems may best be addressed through a pro-feminist approach. In my further research, the aim is to look at the processes employed by feminist writers and teachers and investigate how this can be used to better accommodate the needs of our young male musicians. I am also looking at the literature used in music classrooms to examine how it contributes to the construction of gender.
Changing mindsets in this way is likely to take far longer than changing the symptoms, but in looking at some of these consequences: imbalanced ensembles, loss of students with potential, bullying and even suicide, isn’t it worth it?
Scott D Harrison is Head of Music at Clairvaux MacKillop College, Brisbane, Australia. He also teaches voice to secondary students at Queensland Conservatorium of Music where he is undertaking research in Gender and Music.
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Cantor, C., Neulinger, K., Roth, J. and Spinks, D. 1998. The Epidimology of suicide and attempted suicide among young Australians: A report to the National Health and Medicla Research Council. Australian Institute for Suicide Research and Prevention, Griffith University, Brisbane.
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Crowther, R.D. and Durkin, K. 1982. Sex and age related differences in the musical behaviour, interests and attitudes towards music of 232 secondary school students. Educational studies, 8, 131 -139.
Delzell, J and Leppla, D.A. 1992. Gender association of musical instruments and preferences of fourth-grade students for selected musical instruments. Journal of Research in Music Education, 40(2), 93 -103.
Fortney, P.J., Boyle, J.D., and DeGarbo, N.J. 1993. A study of middle school band students instrument choices. Journal of Research in Music Education, 41, 28 -39.
Fullerton, S and Ainley, J. 2000. Subject Choice by Students in Year 12 in Australian Secondary Schools, Austrlian Council for Educational Research, Canberra.
Gardiner, S. 2000. Developing Boys Education. Paper presented at Queensland Independent Education Union Conference, Brisbane, March 11.
Gates, J.T. 1989. A Historical Comparison of Public Singing by American Men and Women. Journal of Research in Music Education , 37 (1), 37.
Gilbert, P and Gilbert R. 1998. Masculinity Goes to School. Allen and Unwin, Sydney.
Gilbert, P. 1998. Gender and Schooling in New Times: The Challenge of Boys and Literacy. Australian Educational Researcher, 25, 1.
Green, L. 1993. Music, gender and education: a report on some exploratory research. British Journal of Education, 10, 219 – 53.
Green, L. 1996. The emergence of gender as an issue in music education in Charles Plummeridge (ed), Music Education: Trends and Issues. University of London Institute of Education, London.
Green, L. 1997 Music, gender and education: Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.
Hanley, B., 1998. Gender in Secondary Music Education in British Columbia. British Journal of Music Education, 15 (1), 51 -69.
Jay, N. 1991. Gender and Dichotomy, in S.A. Gunew, Reader in Feminist Knowledge, p 89 – 106. Routledge, London
Kemp, A.E. 1985. Psycholgical Androgyny in Musicians. Council for Research in Music Education Bulletin, 85, 102 – 108.
Kenway, J. and Fitzclarence, L. 1997 Masculinity, Violence and Schooling: challenging poisonous pedagogies Gender and Education , 9, (1),117 – 113.
Koza, J.E. 1990. Music Instruction in the 19th Century: View from Godey’s Lady’s Book, 1830 – 77. Journal of Research in Music Education, 38(4), 245 – 257.
Koza, J. E. 1993. The “Missing Males” and other Gender Issues in Music Education: Evidence from the Music Supervisors’ Journal, 1914 – 1924. Journal of Research in Music Education, 41 (3), 212 – 232.
Lingard, B and Douglas, P 1999. Men Engaging Feminisms: Pro-feminism, backlashes and Schooling. Open University Press, Buckingham
LeFanu, N. 1987. Master Musician: an impregnable taboo? Paper presented at Waterloo Room, Southbank Centre London at the Women in Music Weekend, February 6-8.
Leppert, R. and McClary, S. (eds.)1987. Music and Society: The Politics of Composition, Performance and Reception. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.
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Mahoney, P. 1998. Girls will be girls and boys will be first in D. Epstein, J. Elwwod,
McClary, S. 1991. Feminine Endings, Music Gender and Sexuality. University of Minnesota, Minnesota.
McLean, C. 1995. The costs of Masculinity: Placing Men’s Pain in the Context of Male Power, in proceedings of he Promoting Gender Equity
Martino, W. 1997. A bunch of Arseholes, exploring the politics of masculinty for adolescent boys in schools. Social alternatives, 16 (3), 39 – 42.
Martino, W. 1997. Boys in Schools: Addressing the politics of Hegemonic masculinities, paper presented at AARE Annual Conference, Brisbane November 30 – December 4.
Martino, W. 2000. Policing Masculinities: Investigating the role of homophobia and heteronormativity in the lives of adolescent schoolboys. Journal of Men’s Studies, 8(2), 213 – 236.
Mead, M. 1962. Male and Female. Penguin, Harmonsworth.
Misener, C. 1993. Attitudes of Children toward signing and choir particiaption and assessed singing skill. Journal of Research in Music Education, 41(3), 233 -245.
National Association for Music Education. 2000. Music and the Mind (Video Recording. Interna tional Music Products Association and Save the Music, No City
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Patience, A. 1992. A cultural context for adolescent mental health. In R. Rosky, H.S. Eshkevari, and G. Kneebone(eds.)Breaking Out: Challenges in adolescent mental health in Australia, AGPS, Canberra.
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Plummer, D. 2000. Policing Manhood – homophobia and the social construction of Men’s health and welfare. Paper Presented at Teaching Boys, Developing Fine Men Conference.Brisbane, August 22.
Plummer, D. 1999. One of the Boys: Masculinity, homophobia and modern manhood. Harrignton, New York.
Rigby, K. 1996. Bullying in Schools and what to do about it. Australian Council for Educational Research (ACER), Melbourne.
Solie, R. (ed.)1993. Musicology and Difference. University of California Press, Berkley.
Swanwick, K. 1988. Music, Mind and Education. Routledge, London.
Watterston, B. 2000. Single Sex Classes – Do they work for Boys and Girls. Paper Presented at Teaching Boys, Developing Fine Men Conference, Brisbane, August 22.
Williams, J.E. and Best, D.L. 1990. Measuring sex stereotypes, a multination study. Sage, Newbury Park.
Wubbnhorst, T. 1994. Personality Characteristics of Music educators and performers. Psychology of Music, 22, 63 -74.
Zervoudakes, J. and Tanur, J.M. Gender and Musical Instruments: Winds of Change? Journal of Research in Music Education, 42, 58 -67.
I have taught my women in music course here since 1986 (with many modifications, of course). 15 years of a separate course on women’s contributions to music! Where is the integration we all hoped would happen in the undergraduate music curriculum? We have tokenism at the very best in even the most recent texts: a further marginalization of women by placing their contributions in highlighted boxes with cute captions such as “where were the women?”
The texts alone are not to blame. Why do professors continue to exclude women? There will be the casual inclusion of Hildegard in a Medieval course, Strozzi or Jacquet de la Guerre in a Baroque course, the inevitable bows to Clara Schumann and Fanny Mendelssohn in a 19th C. course. Granted the earlier materials are less accessible for traditionally trained academics, but surely the huge wealth of material from the 20th C. demands more than tokenism? How can one teach courses in 20th C. music _without_ including many contributions by women? Yet it’s done all the time. How do we educate our colleagues to teach the music of Rebecca Clarke, Ruth Crawford Seeger, Joan Tower, Hope Lee, Ulstvoskaya, Gubaidulina, Coulthard, etc. etc.? Especially our many male colleagues!
What strategies can we devise to help integrate women into the canon? (I well understand the difficulties we face in teaching undergraduate music history courses and the choices we’re forced to make: who do you leave out? Do you replace Mozart with Marianne von Martinez? Of course not! Do you replace Stamitz with Marianne von Martinez? Why not!
And 20th C. selections are easier choices. If you’re considering Harry Somers, why not substitute him with Jean Coulthard or Violet Archer? (I’m not making judgments here–only throwing out possibilities.) While we must address the “biggies” in our undergraduate courses, we still have room for lesser known composers. Why must they always be male?
When I first started teaching the women in music course in 1986, the feminist movement in music was on a roll and my students seemed receptive to the ideas it presented. In the last five years or so, I’ve noticed a reluctance to accept the word “feminism” even in its broadest definition. Perhaps this is the result of where I am: a fairly conservative environment. Perhaps it’s the result of movements (Promise Keepers) or publications (The Surrendered Wife) or “return to values” ideas. Whatever the reasons, it seems that despite my efforts to provide statistical information on everything from salaries to human rights, from orchestral hirings in European orchestras to difficulties women face as orchestral conductors, many of my students simply don’t believe the evidence. (If _they_ have never been overtly discriminated against, discrimination doesn’t exist.)
I wonder if others have had similar experiences? What strategies have you devised to combat reactionary attitudes amongst your students?
“Women Recipients of the American Rome Prize in Musical Composition” In Women and Music in America since 1900: An Encyclopedia. Ed. Kristine H. Burns, Oryx Press.“Two American Women Capture Coveted Prize.” Article Accepted for publication in the International Alliance for Women in Music sponsored IAWM Journal, VOL. 6, NOS 1 and 2, to be mailed the fourth week in February, 2000. (Now due out late spring 2001)
- Elected to the Board of Directors of the IAWM in May.
- My essay on Women and Music appears in Transforming the Disciplines (ed. Elizabeth MacNabb et al). Haworth, 2001. The book is a WS primer designed as an introduction to the various fields of Women’s Studies and directed towards introductory courses at the senior high/university freshman level.
- With Carolyn F. Ritchey, Festive Fayre: Renaissance Music and Dance for Recorder Ensemble. Waterloo, 2000.
- For a conference in October:“Chaste, sweet, plump, elegant: private and public representations of ‘spectacle’ in female musical performances”
My paper addresses the problems faced by amateur and professional female musicians in the late eighteenth- and early nineteenth centuries. The negativism of “spectacle” in the private sphere versus the more positive connotation of “spectacle” in the public world, yields quixotic musical behaviours and expectations dependent on class and conduct. The demure performances of women in private settings fulfill the role of “accomplishment,” but contrast sharply with musical expectations on stage. The female performer in public must be at once an introvert and an extrovert: on the one hand, she must not make a “spectacle” of herself; on the other hand, she must communicate musical gestures and emotions through her voice, instrument, and body. The musical “automaton” image suggested by the conduct manuals may serve a private world in which young women of no musical talent could learn to “play” an instrument, however mechanically. The public world demanded an involved musical performance, yet expected from women performers a modest and chaste demeanour on stage.
This is the paradox I plan to explore: the dichotomous construction of female virtues and professional expectations and their application to both public and private musical consumption.
- Publications (print, online, CD):“Allik, Kristi (Anne).” Sadie, Stanley, eds. The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, 2nd ed. New York: Grove’s Dictionaries Inc., 2001. Vol. 1, 404-405.“Beecroft, Norma (Marian).” Sadie, Stanley, eds. The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, 2nd ed. New York: Grove’s Dictionaries Inc., 2001. Vol. 3, 69.
“Soundwalking Blue Montr?l.” Soundscape: The Journal of Acoustic Ecology. 1(2), Winter 2000: 28-29.
“Fortingall Moment.” Soundscape: The Journal of Acoustic Ecology. 1(2), Winter 2000: 33.
Sounding Places with Hildegard Westerkamp. Monograph published on the Electronic Music Foundation site. http://www.emf.org/guidetotheworld/artists/mccartney00/. November 2000.
“Come Out and Play! Why are Gender and Feminist Studies So Late to Come to Music?” Ctrl+Shift Art -Ctrl+Shift Gender: Convergences of
Gender, New Media and Art. Amsterdam, Netherlands: Axis Voor de Kunsten V/M, 2000: 18-21.
“Soundscape Composition and the Subversion of Electroacoustic Norms.” Journal SEAMUS 14 (2): 6- 24, Spring 2000.
“Soundwalking Interactions: ISEA, Sao Paolo, August 1999.” Soundscape: The Journal of Acoustic Ecology. 1 (1), Spring 2000: 31.
“Cyborg Experiences: Contradictions and Tensions of Technology, Nature and the Body in Hildegard Westerkamp’s ‘Breathing Room.’” Gender and Music. Edited by Pirkko Moisala and Beverley Diamond. Urbana, IL: University of Illinois Press, 2000: 317-335.
“Andra McCartney.” Radiant Dissonance: An Audio Art Radio Series CD. Ottawa: Canadian Society for Independent Radio Production, 2000.
“Excerpt from Coiled Chalk Circle.” The Mix CD. Chicago: Artemisia Gallery, 2000.
- Works Submitted for Publication
“Multimedia soundscape works, listening, and the touch of sound.” Aural Cultures. Edited by Jim Drobnick. Expected publication 2002.
“Controversy-Response-Silence: Reception Issues in Electroacoustic Music.” Canadian Music: Issues of Media and Technology. Edited by Beverley Diamond and Robert Witmer. Expected publication 2002.
“Moments of Laughter: Recording childhood, performing motherhood, refusing to shut up, and laughing.” Accepted by Perspectives of New Music, expected publication 2002.
“Music, Gender and Sexuality.” With Susan Cook. The Garland Encyclopaedia of World Music: United States and Canada. In press, expected publication Jan. 2001.
- Performances and Installations
“Soundwalks.” Open Ears Festival of Music and Sound, Kitchener, Ontario. May 5-6, 2001.My website was selected for P?iph?ique: volet chronique, curated by Nicole Gingras for GIV. Spring 2001.
“Le terroir sonore du phare Lachinois.” Web installation. Groupe Intervention Video, December 2000.
“Textures.” The River Project. Web installation. www.earthear.com. Fall 2000.
“Soundwalking Queen Elizabeth Park”. Computer installation. Between Nature. Lancaster University, UK, July 30, 2000.
“Inside the Soundscape.” Radio show. Co-host with Hildegard Westerkamp. RaDio BuRst! Festival, Trent Radio, June 29, 2000.
“Homing Ears.” Performance. The Music of Sound, Peterborough New Dance Series, June 30, 2000.
- Conference Presentations:
“Gender, Genre and Moments of Laughter.” SEAMUS. Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, March 2, 2001.
“Placing and Webbing with Sound.” Art and New Technologies: The Real, The Virtual, and the Auratic. Mus? des Beaux-Arts, Montr?l, Feb 11, 2000.
“Soundwalks and Subjectivity.” The garden of sounds – planting the seeds of aural subversion. Femmes Branch?s, Studio XX, Montr?l, March 3, 2000.
“Multimedia soundscape works, listening, and the touch of sound.” Uncommon Senses, Concordia University, Montr?l, April 27, 2000.
“Recording Soundwalk.” Between Nature, Lancaster University, July 2000.
“Soundwalking Home [Page].” Sound Escape, Trent University, Peterborough Ontario, July 1, 2000.
“Les sorci?es ?ectroacoustiques.” Les Sorci?es font du bruit. Super MicMac. Montr?l, October 31, 2000.
- Conference session chair
“Sound as Local/Global Language.” Sound Escape, Trent University, Peterborough Ontario, July 1, 2000.
- InterviewsXX Files, CKUT, April 2000.
Where’s the Beat? CKUT, June 2000.
CBC Radio 1, November 2000.
- Research GrantsSoundwalking Blue Montr?l, principal investigator, FRDP Concordia, $22500, two years, 2000-2001.In and Out of the Studio, principal investigator, SSHRC small grant, $5000, one year.
Soundwalking Blue Montr?l, principal investigator, FCAR, $45000, three years, 2001-2004.
In and Out of the Studio, principal investigator Andra McCartney, co-investigators Prof. Beverley Diamond (York), Dr. Karen Pegley (Toronto), Prof. Ellen Waterman (Trent), $89500, three years, April 2001.
Faculty Research Travel Grant, Lancaster, UK; 2000.
Faculty Research Travel Grant, Turku, Finland; 2000.
In and Out of the Studio
- Summary of Proposed Research”In and Out of the Studio” is conceived as an ethnographic multimedia project that arises from research methodologies developed for my master’s and doctoral theses. For my Master’s thesis, I interviewed fourteen women composers of electroacoustic music, and published articles on their working processes, institutional relations, and discourse about technology. The composers participated in the editing process and the project contributed to creating a community among them through their participation in discussion and analysis of their ideas and experiences.
Part of the multimedia presentation included in my doctoral dissertation was entitled “In the Studio,” and was based on an interview with Hildegard Westerkamp, a Vancouver composer and sound artist, about the production of one particular recent work. I also included a multimedia presentation based on my own creative process, making a sound-based computer installation from a soundwalk recording. When presenting my doctoral work at academic conferences and sound art festivals, I have found these multimedia presentations to be very popular with emerging sound artists and producers, particularly women, who appreciate the close engagement with a particular sound artist’s way of working.
My application proposes to expand and extend this pilot multimedia project to consider the working methods of several sound producers, from a variety of media (such as radio, film sound, television, hypermedia, performance art), and in different institutional contexts. I hope to establish a greater sense of community among women sound producers who are separated by disciplinary boundaries, and to make their working methods and philosophies accessible to scholars in the fields of women’s studies, music, cultural studies, communication studies and interactive art as well as to emerging and established sound producers.
I have begun to develop a working research partnership with Dr. Ellen Waterman (Cultural Studies, Trent University), Dr. Beverley Diamond (Ethnomusicology, York University), and Dr. Karen Pegley (Postdoctoral Fellow, Faculty of Music, University of Toronto), who all have agreed to contribute work on related ethnographic projects to this research. Dr. Alison Beale (Communication Studies, Simon Fraser University) has agreed to act as a policy consultant.
- Research Grant Applications
“Sounding Canadian Communities.” Canada Council Media Arts Development Project Grant, Canadian Electroacoustic Community, $17,210, one year, 2001.5.4 Elizabeth Keathley, University of Tennessee, Knoxville
“‘Die Frauenfrage’ in Erwartung: Schoenberg’s Collaboration with Marie Pappenheim,” in Schoenberg and Words: The Modernist Years, Charlotte M. Cross and Russell Berman, eds.; Border Crossings Vol. 11, Daniel Albright, series ed. (New York: Garland Publishing 2000), 139-177.”Marie Pappenheim and ‘die Frauenfrage’ in Schoenberg’s Viennese Circle,” Journal of the Arnold Sch?berg Center Vol. 2 (2000): 212-227.
Book review: “Albert Fuller.” Alice Tully: An Intimate Portrait (Urbana and Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 1999),” Notes: Quarterly Journal of the Music Library Association, Vol. 57, No. 1 (September 2000): 155-6.
- Presented papers:
“‘Dick, Dika, Dickest’: Dika Newlin’s ‘Thick Description’ of Schoenberg in America,” at the symposium “Arnold Schoenberg in America,” Arnold Sch?berg Center, Vienna, Austria, May 2-6, 2001.”Gender, Musical Modernism, and the Politics of Authorship: Schoenberg and Pappenheim’s Erwartung, op. 17,” Eleventh International Interdisciplinary Conference of the Society for Textual Scholarship, The City University of New York, April 18-21, 2001.
“A Pedagogy of Tolerance: Teaching Schoenberg’s ‘Expressionist’ Melodramas,” College Music Society Southern Chapter Regional Meeting, Valdosta State University, Valdosta, Georgia, March 1-3, 2001.
- I received a grant from the University of Tennessee Office of Research to subvent the translation of this article into German:“Erwartung, Monodram in einem Act, op. 17,” in Arnold Sch?berg: Interpretationen seiner Werke, Gerold Gruber, ed. (Laaber: Laaber Verlag, forthcoming).
“A Context for Eminem’s ‘Murder Ballads,’” Feminist Theory and Music VI: Confluence and Divide, Boise State University, Boisie, Idaho, July 5 – 8, 2001.
“Does Electronic Music Have a Gender?” Feminist Theory and Music 6: Confluence and Divide, Boise State University, Boisie, Idaho, July 5 – 8, 2001.
- In the Fall I will be teaching a course in Women in Music (the first time they’ve let me teach it here at UT!) and will participate in an interdisciplinary, team-taught course, “Berlin, The City with Scars,” directed by Peter Hoeyng, German Department, University of Tennessee.
6.1 The Women’s Philharmonic, now completing our 19th year of promoting and supporting women in classical music, needs your help. Over the years, we have had the financial backing of many private and government funding groups, as well as generous individual donors. We have received numerous ASCAP awards and have commissioned, premiered and recorded more works composed by women than any other orchestra. Our non-performance projects, including the National Women Conductors Initiative and the Composers Symposia, are well established and valued as unique and results-oriented. Now, in a time of special need, we are looking to broaden our support at the grass-roots level, both to build our financial base and to spread the word of our efforts and accomplishments.
As a member of the musical/feminist community, you surely share our vision of “a world in which women composers, conductors and performers have presence and power.” Your financial assistance at this time will help enable us to continue our important work to bring that vision alive.
Why are we asking for your support now? Here are a few explanatory lines from our May 18 press release:
Citing the rising cost of doing business in San Francisco coupled with the costs of mounting a concert series, The Women’s Philharmonic announced this morning that it would suspend its 2001/2002 San Francisco subscription season. In the coming year, the organization will focus on national projects to promote the careers of women composers, conductors, and performers and will search for economically feasible ways to continue the performing work of the organization.
“The heart of this issue is serving our mission,” said Board President Leyna Bernstein. “Our goal has always been to move talented women into positions of power and influence in orchestral music nationally, and we have been successful in advancing the careers of numerous women composers and conductors. Recently, our local concert attendance has not kept pace with the skyrocketing costs of doing business in the Bay Area. Additionally, the region’s well-documented economic slowdown has negatively impacted our individual giving.”
Our most immediate need is for financial assistance, but we also seek ideas and volunteer help in several key areas, especially if you live in the San Francisco area. Every gift helps. Checks may be sent to The Women’s Philharmonic, 44 Page St., Suite 604D, San Francisco, CA, 94102. To offer ideas, volunteer time, or for more information about TWP, visit us online at www.womensphil.org.
Robyn Bramhall is on the Board of Directors of The Women’s Philharmonic. She has been involved with TWP from the beginning, serving as Librarian and Program Annotator prior to joining the Board. Please feel free to contact her directly at email@example.com.
Held in conjunction with the 11th annual meeting of Gender Research in Music, the conference will be held at Boise State University July 5-8, 2001 in Boise Idaho. Theoretical worlds, like the confluence of rivers and divides in the land, are altered by forces impinging on them and the multiple combinations by which they may be experienced and conceived. For more information, see the conference webpage at http://music.boisestate.edu/ftm6/.
A conference on Stefan George will take place at Queens’ College, Cambridge, on March 20-22, 2002. This conference, entitled ‘In Search of the Secret Germany: Stefan George, his Circle and the Weimar Republic’ aims to bring together specialists of Great Britain, Germany and North America to re-examine the legacy of the George Circle in German intellectual and cultural history. Peter Hoffmann (McGill), Robert Norton (Notre Dame) and Bertram Schefold (Frankfurt) have agreed to act as keynote speakers, but we are still looking for participants from the U.K. (including Ph.D.students). We are particularly (though not exclusively) interested in papers discussing the politics of the Circle during the interwar period, e.g. in relation to:
- German academe and ‘Wissenschaft’
- Nietzsche, Nietzscheanism
- Catholicism, Judaism
- the ‘voelkisch’ movement
- the Conservative Revolution
Proposals (including a 100-word abstract of the paper and a half-page CV) should be submitted via the list or directly to:Martin A. Ruehl
Cambridge CB3 9ET
See also: http://www.jiscmail.ac.uk/lists/stefan-george-conference.html
The centenary of Ruth Crawford Seeger (1901-1953) is a timely occasion to consider the life, music, and cultural significance of an extraordinary composer and folk music activist. The first woman to be awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in music, Crawford Seeger developed a unique modernist musical style in the 1920s and early 1930s. Her best-known work, the String Quartet 1931, stands as a striking example of modernist musical experimentation and establishes her as a brilliant and inventive composer. She was a vital participant in the “ultra-modern” school of composition in New York City, a group of composers that included Aaron Copland, Henry Cowell, and Dane Rudhyar. Through her transcriptions and arrangements of traditional American music, Crawford Seeger emerged as a leader in the folk song revival of the 1930s and 1940s, along with John and Alan Lomax and her stepson Pete Seeger.
Ruth Crawford Seeger: Modernity, Tradition, and the Making of American Music will focus on Crawford Seeger’s influence on modernist composition and the Seeger family’s far-reaching impact on the urban folk revival. During Crawford Seeger’s lifetime, her music was enthusiastically endorsed by the composers Henry Cowell and Edgard Var?e, musicologist Charles Seeger (who was her composition teacher before he became her husband), and the music patron Blanche Walton. Shortly after her marriage to Seeger in 1932 and the birth of her first child, Michael, in 1933, she stopped composing and turned instead to the task of teaching music to children and of collecting, transcribing, arranging, and publishing folk songs, projects she would continue until her untimely death from cancer at the age of 52.
In the received history of early twentieth-century music, European composers tend to be represented as having made more significant contributions than American composers. An even more entrenched notion is that twentieth-century art music was an exclusively male preserve. The musical legacy of Crawford Seeger, Amy Beach, Marion Bauer, Margaret Bonds, Elisabeth Lutyens, Miriam Gideon, and numerous other women challenges this myth. The conference’s concentration on Crawford Seeger’s life, music, and cultural activism-one of a few conferences devoted to the work of a woman composer-will help to dispel lingering notions about the absence of talented and influential female musical figures in the twentieth century.
Our focus on Crawford Seeger’s prescient contributions to American modernism and on her advocacy of traditional music presents an innovative view of twentieth-century music. The conference will help to break down the notion that modern and traditional music are diametrically opposed. To straddle both worlds was by no means unique, but the Seegers’ lasting and unusual musical legacy-one that embraces Elliott Carter and Pete Seeger, serialismand socialism-deserves recognition and further study. By presenting the perspectives of composers, performers, musicologists, theorists, folklorists, and cultural historians on a pathbreaking figure who managed to bridge the modern and the traditional, the conference will contribute to a more comprehensive understanding of how musical movements such as ultra-modernism and the urban folk revival helped to shape twentieth-century culture.
Ruth Crawford Seeger: Modernity, Tradition, and the Making of American Music (Friday-Saturday, October 26-27, 2001 at Brooklyn College and the Graduate Center, City University of New York) will focus on Ruth Crawford Seeger’s contributions to twentieth-century composition and the Seeger family’s far-reaching impact on the urban folk revival. Two days of panels, roundtable discussions, and concerts will concentrate on Crawford Seeger’s life, music, and cultural activism, and will help to dispel lingering notions about the absence of talented and influential female musical figures in the twentieth century. Participants will include Judith Tick, Peggy, Mike, and Pete Seeger, Pauline Oliveros, Bess Lomax Hawes, Tania Leon, Christian Wolff, Marilyn Nonken, Joseph Straus, Lyn Ellen Burkett, Taylor Greer, Ellie Hisama, Benjamin Filene, Anthony Seeger, and Larry Polansky.
30th August-2nd September 2001, Canberra, Australia
Dr. Ruth Lee Martin Conference Director
One-day conference on 30th August 2001, held in Canberra, on any issues dealing with women and music.
Ruth A. Solie, professor of music at Smith College and a participant in their women’s studies program. She is also an associate editor of 19th Century Music; co-editor, with Eugene Narmour of Explorations in Music, the Arts, and Ideas: Essays in Honour of Leonard B Meyer (1988); and well-known author of many articles which give a feminist perspective on nineteenth-century music and its cultural and intellectual history.
Two forums held in conjunction with the conference:
Friday 31st August 10.00 – 11.30am
Musicologists and Composers panel discussion
Can a voice that is essentially female be distinguished from any other voices that constitute musical identity? Can identity be truly expressed in music?
Saturday 1st September 9.00 – 10.30am
Musicologists and Composers Forum
Women’s music and feminist musicology has undermined and destabilised the canon. As a result an alternative canon(s) has arisen. Yet, is the concept of canonicity itself an inherently patriarchal construct? Are there alternatives and if so, what might they be?
Conference registration: $60/$40 concession.
For more information, please email:
The Marquette University Women’s Studies Program(http://www.marquette.edu/wstudies/) announces its eighth annual conference will be held March 29- 31, 2002. The theme for the conference will be “WOMEN and CREATIVITY.” Suitable topics for twenty- minute presentations that could involve a multitude of disciplinary perspectives (e.g. historical, literary, artistic, visual, performance, etc.) including, but not necessarily limited to, the following: women as literary, visual, or performance artists; the portrayal of women in literature; women as subjects in visual arts; the stories women tell; ways in which women’s art does or does not reflect reality; glimpses of differing reality as illustrated through art; the interaction of women artists; the varying perceptions of women as artists; varying perceptions of women as subjects; women’s access to outlets for the various art forms; critical consideration of women artists; etc. One- page (no more than 250 words) summary of paper should be submitted by November 15, 2001.
Diane Long Hoeveler, Women’s Studies Coordinator
Department of English, Marquette University
Milwaukee, WI 53201-1881
Phone: (414) 288-3466 – E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org - Fax: (414) 288-5433
Journal of Historical Research in Music Education
Vol. XXII:1, October 2000
Political Influences on Curriculum Content and Musical Meaning: Hong Kong Secondary Music Education, 1949-1997 Wai-Chung Ho
The Eclectic Piano-forte School of William Cumming Peter Debra Brubaker Burns
Silvio Deolindo Fr?es: Profile of an Early Twentieth Century Brazilian Musician Ivana Pinho Kuhn
The Music Assessment of the 1971-72 National Assessment Of Educational Progress: A History Victoria L. Smith
Book reviews by:
David Perry and Kyung-Suk
Audrey Berger and Shelly Cooper
Nancy F. Vogan