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CFP Deadline Extended: \”Instruments, Interfaces, Infrastructures\”

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      Landon Morrison

      Instruments, Interfaces, Infrastructures: An Interdisciplinary Conference on Musical Media

      >> UPDATE: new deadline for submission of proposals is Tuesday, January 31st @ 11:59pm

      We are pleased to announce a three-day conference bringing together researchers and artists from a variety of music-related disciplines for a dialogue on the interconnected themes of instrumentsinterfaces, and infrastructures.As evidenced by the rise of “new” organologies, there is growing interest among music scholars in studying instruments as epistemologically loaded objects that encapsulate knowledge of sound and mediate sonic practices (Magnusson 2019, Rehding 2016, Tresch and Dolan 2013, Sonevytsky 2008). Our conference aims to extend this work into the interdisciplinary zones of interface studies (Galloway 2012, Chun 2011, Suchman 2007) and infrastructure studies (Devine and Boudreault-Fournier 2021, Parks and Starosielski 2015, Bowker and Star 2002). Bridging these discourses, the conference will open space for imagining new theories, methodologies, and practices that scale between different layers of musical media, exploring how bodies, tools, and techniques are entangled in a dynamic web of material-semiotic relations.The conference will feature three keynote speakers—musicologist Emily Dolan, sound artist and media scholar Tara Rodgers, and music theorist Sumanth Gopinath—each responding to one of the main conference themes. There will also be creative workshops and performances featuring the 40-loudspeaker HYDRA system of the Harvard University Studio for Electroacoustic Composition, as well as faculty-artists from the Electronic Production and Design (EPD) program at Berklee College of Music. Finally, conference attendees will be offered guided tours of acoustical artifacts at Harvard’s Collection of Historical Scientific Instruments, and researchers are invited to propose papers and panels focusing on these historical objects at hand.The organizing committee welcomes proposals for individual papers, themed sessions, roundtables, workshops, and creative contributions. To foster an interdisciplinary space of collaboration, we encourage applications that respond to the conference themes from a broad range of disciplinary perspectives, including music theory, (ethno)musicology, composition, performance studies, science and technology studies, media studies, sound studies, anthropology, sociology, philosophy, psychology, computer science, sound design and audio engineering. We especially encourage proposals by scholars, artists, and activists working within and across Black, Indigenous, and other people of color, LGBTQ+ people, disabled people, and other underrepresented communities in the fields of music, media, and sound studies.The list below maps out general areas of interest and is offered here as a starting point, but is by no means exhaustive in its scope:

      • Material conditions for music production, distribution, and consumption
      • Musical bodies, tools, and cultural techniques
      • Disability and the design of musical and audio-technical instruments
      • Analyzing performance/ Performing analysis
      • Critical improvisation studies and social aesthetics
      • Global histories of music-theoretical instruments
      • Ecological and environmental impact of music industries
      • Immaterial labor and musical work in digital economies
      • Multi-scalar temporalities of audible media infrastructures
      • Instruments and questions of objectivity
      • Ethics of classification systems for instruments, sounds, listeners
      • Black and Indigenous approaches to sound technology studies
      • Algorithmic bias in big data analytics
      • Cultural politics of (machine) listening
      • Phenomenologies of human-computer interaction
      • Feminist histories and philosophies of science and technology
      • Interface aesthetics
      • Software and ideology
      • Queer operating systems
      • Sound spatialization and listening perspective (headphones, stereo, multi-channel)
      • Synthesis, sampling, and other electronic-digital audio techniques
      • Acoustical artifacts in Harvard’s Collection of Historical Scientific Instruments (CHSI)

      Guidelines for Submission

      To apply, submit an abstract (350 words), short biography (150 words), and a list of five keywords describing your project. Optionally, you may also provide a select bibliography (1 page) and supplementary examples (1-2 pages), or in the case of creative proposals, a URL weblink to access audio/visual material (2-3 minutes).A standard a/v setup will be provided for all paper presentations; for alternate formats—including workshops, performances, and sound art installations—please specify any special equipment that is required (staging, sound system, etc.). Due to space limitations, we can only accommodate creative proposals for relatively small-scale concerts/ exhibitions, and making any necessary arrangements for performers will be the responsibility of the artist or composer.The deadline for all proposals is at 11:59pm EST on Tuesday, January 31, 2023. Authors of accepted proposals will be notified in early February 2023. Email complete proposals to iiicon2023[at]gmail.com.

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