bandeau_actu musicologie

édition du 22 avril 2023 —

Music in Switzerland in the past and present: The Dictionary of Music in Switzerland for the 21st century

23-24 November 2023, Bern
Workshop: 25 November 2023
University of Bern, Kuppelraum (Hochschulstrasse 4, Bern)
Deadline for submission of abstracts: 11 June 2023

Conference languages: English, German, French and Italian
Conference website

Music lexicography has a long history. Although one of the first music encyclopedias, Jean-Jacques Rousseau's Dictionnaire de Musique of 1768, was penned by a Swiss scholar, the history of music in Switzerland was treated stepmotherly in previous lexicography. Rousseau even sometimes reduced Swiss music history to the cow row. In 1965, the last music encyclopedia was published in Switzerland, and it was devoted to the biographies of musicians.

There is an enormous gap in Swiss music lexicography. The new Dictionary of Music in Switzerland (DMS) aims to close this gap in digital and multimedia form. This requires in-depth reflection, because the lexicographical methods of the past, which aimed for a printed result, are insufficient for the digitalised world. Digitisation and the World Wide Web as a global communication infrastructure have thoroughly changed the system of knowledge generation and dissemination. This change brings new opportunities and also new risks.

Our conference will address current methods, technical possibilities, opportunities, risks and future prospects associated with music lexicography in the digital age. In addition to classical questions such as the selection of keywords or the weighting of content, we are interested in questions of networking with standards data and with existing information providers, questions about technical standards and the handling of multimedia, and last but not least the organisation of volunteers and their training. The aim of this conference is to discuss the many questions surrounding the making of digital encyclopedias, to exchange experiences and to develop concrete solutions in order to advance projects such as the Dictionary of Music in Switzerland.

We welcome individual contributions (20 minutes, followed by 10 minutes of discussion) on the following topics:

- Best practices and pitfalls in digital (music) lexicography

- Legal, ethical and philosophical issues specifically related to the format of the lexicon as hypertext

- Questions of data preparation and the associated methodological implications, especially with regard to the design of user interfaces

- Technical specifics of multimedia music lexicography

- Dealing with multilingualism

- Experiences with recruiting and training volunteer contributors.

Please send your abstract (max. 300 words), three to five keywords and a short biography (max. 150 words) as pdfby 11 June 2023. The contact person is Dr Caiti Hauck.


We will also be holding a workshop on Saturday 25 November 2023: "Did your grandfather compose? Was your neighbour a pianist? Write about it! Workshop: researching and writing music history articles for the Dictionary of Music in Switzerland". This Citizen Science event is part of the thematic cycle "Cultural Participation" of the event series RECTO VERSO of the Swiss Academy of Humanities and Social Sciences (SAGW). It is open to anyone who would like to learn how to create an encyclopedia article. Caiti Hauck will accept registrations until 15 November 2023

The conference and workshop are initiatives of the Dictionary of Music in Switzerland, a board of trustees of the Swiss Academy of Humanities and Social Sciences.

The Dictionary of Music in Switzerland introduces itself

The Dictionary of Music in Switzerland (DMS) is the multidisciplinary and multilingual online encyclopedia on music in Switzerland. It is a multimedia information platform on the historical and contemporary musical life in Switzerland and is aimed at musicians, scholars and students as well as interested members of the general public. The DMS documents personalities of Swiss music history as well as places, institutions and topics from all areas of musical life. For an insight into the preliminary state of the DMS, we recommend a visit to the beta version.

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Vendredi 21 Avril, 2023