CFP: Rethinking Amateurism: Popular Music Study Group Evening Session, AMS San Antonio

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Call for Papers
“Rethinking Amateurism”American Musicological Society Popular Music Study Group

Submission deadline: April 30, 2018
Conference Date: Thursday, November 1, 2018
San Antonio, TX

Keynote Speaker: Karl Hagstrom Miller (University of Virginia)
The theme of this year’s AMS Popular Music Study Group paper session is “Rethinking Amateurism.” In popular music, the distinction between an “amateur” and “professional” musician is blurry at best. The primary criterion for professionalism is financial success in the music industry, which leaves unattended a host of considerations more germane to the artistic endeavor itself. This session aims to challenge conventional notions of musical amateurism.

We invite submissions on any subject that reassesses the role and function of amateurs. Possible topics to explore include but are not limited to:
- Discourses of skill
- Perceived cultural value
- Economies of musical labor
- Autodidacticism
- Distinctions between career and “hobby” musicians
- Self-publishing and independent music communities
- Technologies used by and/or advertised toward amateur musicians

We define “popular music” in the broadest possible sense, including, but not limited to pop, rock, R&B, hip-hop, EDM, country, minstrelsy, parlor songs, tin pan alley, and jazz, as well as non-Western popular musics. We also seek papers from a wide variety of disciplinary, methodological, and personal perspectives. 

The session format allots each speaker 15 minutes for presentation and 5 minutes for discussion. Send proposals of no more than 300 words via Word document to  along with your name, affiliation, and any audio, visual, or other needs for the presentation.