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Music and Spatiality

46 October 2019, Belgrade
13th Biennial International Conference on Music Theory and Analysis
University of Arts in Belgrade, Faculty of music, Department of Music Theory
Call for papers
Submission deadline: March 15, 2019.
Notification of acceptance (by e-mail): by the end of April 2019.

Space is omnipresent in human life, but we could also say that the omnipresence of human life itself – embodied in a set of relationships emerging both from the very physicality of the human body as well as from the virtually infinite scope of human actions, activities and their products – delimits and constitutes space. Space as related to music can be thought of in both of these ways. On the one hand, space – speaking in strictly physical terms – is omnipresent in creating, performing, listening and theorizing/contemplating/investigating music. However, within a given physical space there can exist different politically, ideologically, or discursively constituted spaces of these aforementioned domains of musical practice. In that sense, space is music’s surrounding, ‘external’ field within and by which music is constituted. On the other hand, the omnipresent relationships between the different domains of musical practice – embodied in the ‘musical’ products of human actions and activities – establish the ‘coordinates’ of a distinct musical space: its structures and hierarchies, density, volume and dynamics, surface and depth, ups-and-downs, perspectives on and perspectives from it. In other words, to put it briefly, music is essentially, inevitably and permanently bound to space, both the one it exists in and the one it creates itself.

Since antiquity, the notion of space (the Greek khôra or the Latin spatium) has occupied human thought, entering from early modern times into philosophical and scientific discourse in ever more lively ways. Whether conceived of in absolute, relational or relativistic terms, whether comprehended in the pure physical or in complex conceptual sense, the notion of space has provoked and inspired discussion and argument. In reference to music, it has perhaps been more frequently invoked, characterized and examined in relation to 20th-century music and from the perspective of 20th-century musical thought, but it is by no means confined to them. Music’s spatial qualities transcend specific styles and compositional techniques. In elucidating music, spatial characterizations enter musical discourses more or less intentionally and with different degrees of the theorists’ awareness toward their role in forming the recipient’s understanding and experience of music and its properties (think of, for example, ancient cosmology or the first theories of musical style).

The conference Music and Spatiality aims at contributing to and clarifying this rich and diverse field from all of these perspectives, which should also be understood in light of the specific history of the Belgrade conference. Namely, the notion of space has in certain ways already been addressed in relation to themes of two of our previous conferences (Musical Semiotics – 40 years after /2013/ and Music and Temporality /2015/). For our 2019 conference, with the intention of bringing the notion of space to the forefront of our theoretical and analytical attention, we suggest the following topics:

The official language of the Conference is English.

A selection of papers will be considered for publication in an edited book.

Conference fee: 50 € (Euros)

Proposal formats

  1. Spoken papers (20 minutes plus 10 minutes for discussion)
  2. Panels (3-4 participants, 80 minutes plus 10 minutes for discussion)
  3. Book presentations (30 minutes)

Submission guidelines

Please send your proposal (in Word format, not pdf), including indication of the thematic area as listed above, to Jelena Mihajlović-Marković or Ivana Ilić to the following e-mail address: 

Organised by Faculty of Music, University of Arts, Belgrade, Serbia

Keynote Speakers :Ildar Khannanov, Professor of Music Theory, Peabody Institute, Johns Hopkins University - Nico Schüler, University Distinguished Professor of Music Theory and Musicology, School of Music, Texas State University - Dmitri Tymoczko, Professor of Music, Department of Music, Princeton University

Program Committee : Denis Collins (University of Queensland, Australia) ; Arnie Cox (Oberlin College and Conservatory of Music, USA) ; Márta Grábocz (Université de Strasbourg, Alsace, France) ; Annegret Huber (Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst, Austria) ; Gesine Schröder (Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst, Austria) ; Benedict Taylor (University of Edinburgh, UK) ; Ivana Ilić (Univerzitet umetnosti /University of Arts/, Serbia) ; Jelena Mihajlović-Marković (Univerzitet umetnosti /University of Arts/, Serbia) ; Miloš Zatkalik (Univerzitet umetnosti /University of Arts/, Serbia)

Organisation Committee :Lazar Đorđević ; Ivana Ilić ; Tijana Ilišević ; Jelena Mihajlović-Marković ; Stanko Simić ; Miloš Zatkalik

Kindest regards,
Miloš Zatkalik, Jelena Mihajlović-Marković and Ivana Ilić


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Vendredi 22 Février, 2019