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Music, Sound, Space and Place: Ethnomusicology and Sound Studies




British Forum for Ethnomusicology and Société française d’ethnomusicologie Joint Autumn Conference 2019
Thursday 31st October to Saturday 2nd November 2019.  

Academic conference on the general theme of ethnomusicology and sound studies held at City, University of London. The conference will also incorporate the annual John Blacking lecture, organised by the Royal Anthropological Institute, which will be held at the British Library on the evening of 31st October.

It might be argued, perhaps a little simplistically, that ethnomusicology has always been involved with sound studies, since its practitioners have often engaged with sounds that challenge conventional views of what constitutes ‘music’ through their examinations of sung poetry, chants, percussive ritual accompaniments, etc. The field was thus well placed to build on the early work of R. Murray Schafer in the 1960s and ‘70s in what is now termed acoustic ecology, and scholars such as Steven Feld asserted in the 1980s new auditory horizons for ethnomusicologists. In the following decades many others have engaged in research which is fluidly situated between anthropology, musicology, acoustics, environmental studies and musical creativity. In such work, listening and the auditory experience are seen as essential components of human musicking and of the relationship between human lives and the spaces and places in which they are lived. These approaches have provided new insights into longstanding ethnomusicological concerns involving emplacement/displacement, identity construction, the politics of sound, etc. Today these are augmented by, for example, growing interests in music and ecology, or the complex relationships between geographical space and digital music cultures.

Conference schedule (pdf) - subject to change

Registration fees:

BFE/SFE Members £50 plus £3.24 booking fee
Non members £60 plus £3.79 booking fee
BFE/SFE Student members £20 plus £1.59 booking fee
Student non members £25 plus £1.87 booking fee
Day rate for members and non-members £25 plus £1.87 booking fee
Student Day rate £15 plus £1.32 booking fee

Conference registration is via Eventbrite. As this is an academic educational conference VAT will not be charged on any ticket type.

Please note that participants DO NOT need to register for the RAI John Blacking Lecture on the British Library website. This will be included in the conference package.

By booking a place at this conference you agree to our Refund Policy.

Invitation and visa letters for delegates will only be provided once payment for delegate fees has been made. For current and up to date advice on Visa requirements please visit the UK Government website.

Organising committee:

Cassandre Balosso-Bardin (University of Lincoln)
Stephen Cottrell (City, University of London)
Byron Dueck (Open University)
Christine Guillebaud (Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
Laudan Nooshin (City, University of London)
François Picard (Sorbonne Université)


For enquiries relating to submitted papers please email

For enquiries relating to registration please email

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When and where

From Thursday 31st October 2019 to Saturday 2nd November 2019

College Building City, University of London St John Street London EC1V 4PB UK

Contact Details

City Events Team

+44 (0)20 7040 8037

Contact the organiser