Reminder & Deadline Extension: CFP for "Music, Sound and Trauma Studies: Interdisciplinary Perspectives" (Online Conference, February 12-14, 2021)

Jillian Rogers's picture
Call for Papers
September 15, 2020
Indiana, United States
Subject Fields: 
Area Studies, Cultural History / Studies, Humanities, Music and Music History, Psychology

CFP: Music, Sound, and Trauma: Interdisciplinary Perspectives


Location: Online


Date: February 12-14, 2021


New Deadline for Proposals: September 15, 2020


Keynote Presenters: Maria Hamilton Abegunde (IU-Bloomington), Laura Brown (Seattle, WA), Maria Cizmic (University of South Florida), Lucy Dhegrae (Resonant Bodies Festival), The Pacifica Quartet (IU-Bloomington)


Although trauma has always shaped human lives, discussions of trauma have especially come to the fore in our current moment. From the pandemic’s impacts—including global spikes in domestic violence and adverse impacts on mental health—to the tragedies of systemic racism and police brutality, trauma dominates contemporary conversations for wide swaths of people. Today’s focus on trauma follows a decade of burgeoning attention to the socio-cultural and psychological causes and effects of trauma in popular media and academic scholarship, including music studies. This conference—"Music, Sound, and Trauma: Interdisciplinary Perspectives”— seeks to bring together scholars working in and beyond music and sound studies to address the myriad ways that music and sound historically and contemporaneously not only have helped people process trauma, but also have been implicated in violence resulting in trauma. In addition, we are especially interested in hearing from scholars working with music and sound in pedagogical contexts with a focus on trauma-informed teaching and learning.


Supported by an IU Presidential Arts & Humanities Grant and taking place February 12-14, 2021, this online conference will feature invited talks, roundtable conversations, paper presentations, workshops, and seminars. This event is designed to engender conversations amongst researchers, students, and the general public not only about the role of music and sound in traumatic experience, but also about how attending to trauma as a physiological, psychological, and social phenomenon might produce individual, interpersonal, and social healing. In addition to roundtables, panels, and workshops given by leading researchers in music and trauma studies, musicologist Maria Cizmic (University of South Florida) will give a keynote lecture, with additional keynote performers and speakers to be announced at a later date. This conference is connected with a proposed Oxford Handbook of Music, Sound, and Trauma Studies and a special issue of the Journal of Music History Pedagogy—following the February 2021 meeting, conference organizers will invite contributors to participate in these projects.​


The conference organizers are excited to request proposals for 20-minute paper presentations, 1-hour panels of 3-4 participants, 1-hour workshops, 1-hour lecture recitals, and 1-hour performances (these can be live or pre-recorded).


Although we are certainly interested in papers and presentations that address the traumas of the current moment, we also solicit papers, workshops, lecture recitals, and performances that address music and trauma in various social, cultural, and historical contexts. Topics might include but are not limited to:

  • ​Music, sound, and trauma in contexts of
    • ​war, revolution, and displacement
    • colonial violence
    • systemic racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, ableism, and classism
    • incarceration
    • sexual violence (broadly defined)
    • disease, illness, and medical institutions
    • musical institutions
    • academic music disciplines
    • music education
    • music performance
  • ​Music, sound, and violence
  • Music, sound, and cultural trauma
  • Vocal and instrumental expressions of trauma
  • Trauma-informed pedagogy and teaching about trauma in music classrooms
  • Interdisciplinary approaches to music, sound, and trauma
  • Music, sound, and trauma in literature, media, and film
  • Methodologies for addressing/analyzing music, sound, and trauma
  • Therapeutic potentials of music and sound for traumatized communities and individuals
  • Bridging the gap vis-à-vis trauma studies between music studies and other disciplines (e.g. medical humanities, psychology, sociology, cultural history, anthropology, African-American and African diaspora studies, disability studies, gender and queer studies, etc.)

If you are interested in participating in this conference please send the following to the conference organizers at by September 15, 2020:

  • ​To propose a 20-minute paper:
    • ​​300-word (max.) abstract
    • 100-word (max.) bio
  • ​To propose a 1-hour panel of 3 or 4 (max.) speakers:
    • ​300-word (max.) overview of the panel
    •  ​300-word (max.) abstracts for each speaker’s paper
    •  100-word (max.) bio for each speaker
  • To propose a 1-hour lecture recital:
    • ​300-word (max.) abstract
    • 100-word (max.) bio of each performer involved
  • ​To propose a 1-hour workshop:
    • ​300-word (max.) abstract
    • 100-word (max.) bio of each person involved
  • ​To propose a 1-hour performance:
    • 300-word (max.) abstract
    • 100-word (max.) bio of each performer involved

The conference organizers will notify all applicants of their decisions by November 1, 2020.


See the conference website ( for more information, and feel free to direct any questions you may have to


Conference program committee: Erin Brooks (State University of New York-Potsdam), Jacqueline Fortier (Indiana University-Bloomington), Michelle Meinhart (Trinity Laban Conservatory), and Jillian Rogers (Indiana University-Bloomington).