CFP (conf): Music and the Body


Music and the Body
9-11 March 2012
The University of Hong Kong

Deadline for submission of abstract: 1 November 2011

Department of Music and the Centre for the Humanities and Medicine
The University of Hong Kong


What is the relationship between music and the body? Almost everything concerning music is quintessentially related to the body, yet the answers to this question are multifaceted. The relationship is multimodal involving the auditory, kinaesthetic, and visual, and is observed at diverse levels of experience across sensation, perception, creation/production, interpretation, and communication. The notion of “body” itself is multivalent, and thus the connection can be subject to various interpretations from different perspectives, such as anatomical, medical, cognitive, aesthetic, cultural, social, and historical. Reckoning the clashes between these perspectives, this conference proposes to investigate the multidimensional relationship between music and the body in a setting that promotes a genuine intellectual exchange
of ideas.

The conference is particularly interested in questions and approaches that cut across traditional disciplines. For example, how the humanistic interpretation of corporeality could be linked to the scientific studies of the theme? Conversely, what are the implications of recent medical and neuroscientific investigations to the historical and cultural contextualisation of music and the body? How has music been used to control the body? And in light of the expanded notion of the musical mind and brain, how is the duality between the body and the mind viewed in today’s discourse on music perception? Other interpretations of the theme are equally welcome.


The conference will feature a keynote address by Sander Gilman (Emory University/The University of Hong Kong), with invited presentations by Eric Clarke (University of Oxford), Lawrence Zbikowski (University of Chicago), and Marina Gilman (Emory Voice Center). Other invited speakers will be announced in due course.


We invite papers in all fields related to the theme. The topics may include, but are not limited to, the following:

* Representation of the body in music
* Embodiment in perception and cognition of music
* Psychoanalysis and music
* Brain science and music
* Body and performance studies
* Bodily movements and expressive gestures
* Bodily metaphors in musical discourse
* Audiology and hearing
* Anatomical and pathological approaches to music and the body
* Health/disease and music
* Medicine, biomedicine, and music
* Historical perspectives on music and the body
* Culturological/ethnographic approaches to music and the body

Submissions should comprise a paper title, an abstract of up to 250 words, and a short biography of about 200 words. Please email submissions in PDF or Word format to Dr. Youn Kim (musicandthebody at by 1 November 2011.


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