CFP (conf): The Philosophy of Performance. Art in Modern Society


Call for Abstracts

The Philosophy of Performance: Art in Modern Society
University of Notre Dame
April 27-28, 2012

Deadline for Abstract Submissions
March 1, 2012

Keynote Speakers
Musicology:  Richard Taruskin, University of  California, Berkeley
Philosophy:  Peter Kivy, Rutgers University
Performance:  Mark Beudert, University of Notre Dame

Conference Theme
Within living memory, classical music was viewed as a vital source of political identity, marked by informed performances embodying a living style. These performances were presented to audiences that (in the words of the film philosopher Christian Metz) shared “the same ideology” as composers and performers, thus “filling the [auditoriums]; that is how the machine keeps turning.”  This “machine” was recognized as being of measurable economic benefit for the community.  Today it is viewed as a luxury to be discarded in periods of economic adversity, depriving the community of the richness art brings to our daily spiritual communal lives.

Over the past six years, the position of performance of opera (the most inclusive and expensive of the arts) has flourished on the Notre Dame campus.  This is due to the animating philosophy behind Opera Notre Dame: the study of performance is an ideal subject for a liberal arts campus, the microcosm of society.  The study at Notre Dame not only focuses on the conservatory-level “how” of performance.  It engages as well the “what” and the “why” of performance, the definition of the act and the examination of its purpose in our common life.

This sort of study of performance of classical music is rare.  To foster this study, this conference will bring an international group of distinguished scholars and practitioners in musicology, philosophy, and performance to a campus full of students already engaged in comprehensive study.  They will assemble for a groundbreaking gathering devoted to the study of art in our culture through an academic investigation of issues surrounding the artistic, economic, political, and spiritual act of performance.

Submission Guidelines

Abstract submission is open to any scholar interested in any aspect of The Philosophy of Performance from undergraduate students enrolled at an accredited institution of higher education to senior tenured professors. We welcome papers from all disciplines:  Anthropology, Literary Studies, Film Studies, Theater Studies, Sociology, Theology, Cultural Studies, Gender Studies, History, etc, as well as Musicology and Philosophy.  For an abstract to be considered for acceptance, it must be no more than 4000 characters in length and it must be submitted no later than 15 March 2012 either to:

mbeudert at

or by registering at (cut and paste into browser):

For information about registration, go to (cut and paste into browser):

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