The Music, Language, and Culture Workshop

March 19 – Monica Hairston O’Connell at EthNoise!

Please join us on March 19 for a paper and discussion with Monica Hairston O’Connell. The paper is entitled “The CBMR and Archival Authority” Please find an abstract below.

As always, we will meet at 4:30pm in Goodspeed 205. Our workshop is open to the public.



In the 1970s when Samuel Floyd Jr. began his research, he found that anthologies, secondary sources, and reference works that abound for the art music of Western culture simply did not exist for black music. His own scholarly career relied on his ability to pioneer such research and help build the institutional infrastructure that would spark and then foster the expansion of a necessarily interdisciplinary subfield of music scholarship. Floyd founded the Center for Black Music Research in the wake of Civil Rights and Black Arts movements and during a time of activism by black composers and pioneering scholars. These pioneers allied themselves with the CBMR to pursue activities that would bring the music of black composers and the study of music of the African Diaspora into the mainstream. 
Established in 1990 and opened in September of 1992, the CBMR Library and Archives “supports the research, performance, and educational activities of the CBMR and of other institutions and individuals by providing a comprehensive research collection covering all aspects of black music in the United States, Africa, and other parts of the African diaspora.”  The CBMR Archives provide an useful starting point for theorizations of the archive that seek to acknowledge the practical necessity for many culturally-specific repositories of finding appropriate balance between canon building and displacement or disruption; between the creation of acknowledged and authoritative space in the academy and the kind of “ubiquitous archival authority” that can generate social change.


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