Techniques of Listening

deadline for submissions: 
June 1, 2017
full name / name of organization: 
Music & Sound Studies Interdisciplinary Graduate Research Group
contact email: 

Techniques of Listening


A Conference Organized by the Music and Sound Studies Interdisciplinary Student Group

University of Minnesota


October 13–14, 2017 • Minneapolis, MN

Keynote Speakers: Charles Hirschkind (UC Berkeley) and Emily Dolan (Harvard)


As a way of knowing and interacting with the world, techniques of listening constitute a wide range of socially and historically circumscribed practices that shape our subjective positions and collective identities. Techniques of listening orient the ear and represent sound in distinct and often contradictory ways.


Techniques of listening are bound up in the materials and instruments we listen with and to, but they are also found in the ideologies and cultures that define, use, and misuse sound and music. With this conference, we wish to shed light on the aesthetic, scientific, technical, legal, medical, historical, social, cultural, religious, and philosophical ways of listening as they pertain to any kind of music and/or sound.


We welcome investigations across a wide range of disciplines, and invite submissions on, but not limited to, the following:


  • Practices, theories, and methodologies of listening

  • Epistemologies and ontologies of sound

  • Intersections of gender, class, and race

  • Sound, deafness, and disability

  • Politics and ethics of music, sound, silence, and noise

  • Music and sound in film

  • Literature and the arts

  • Sound and embodiment

  • Soundscapes


As a conference organized for and by graduate students, preference will be given to submissions from graduate students and early career scholars.


The conference committee welcomes individual papers and proposals for panels and roundtable discussions. Please use one of the following formats:


  • For individual 20-minute contributions: up to 300 words.

  • For themed paper sessions or panel discussions: up to 300 words per contribution plus 300 words outlining the rationale for the session.

  • For sessions of up to 120 minutes in innovative formats such as work presentations, artist talks/readings, sound essays, composition workshops, and other presentations not covered by the usual format of academic papers: up to 750 words outlining the form, content and rationale for the session.

  • Please include a list of key terms; a biographical by-line of no more than 50 words; and specification of any AV-technology and/or other equipment needed.


Proposals should be submitted by June 1, 2017 for review. Please send proposals to