The Music, Language, and Culture Workshop

March 24, 2018
by hlrogers

EthNoise! Spring 2018

Please find below the schedule for EthNoise! for the spring quarter. We will meet on Thursdays at the customary location, in Goodspeed 205, with a time change:  from 5:00-6:20pm.


Week 4 (4/19) Dr. Melissa Bilal (Dumanian Visiting Professor in Armenian Studies in the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations)

An Armenian Ethnomusicologist’s Burden: What do I hear in the Captivated Voices of Russian Armenian POWs in WWI German Camps?”

During WWI, the initially secret Royal Prussian Phonographic Commission (Königlich-Preußische Phonographische Kommission) made recordings from the prisoners of war held in various different camps across German territories. Among the interns detained in these camps were Russian Armenian soldiers. In my talk, I will present samples of songs and speech in Armenian, Georgian, and Turkish captured a century ago from these men by the use of the phonograph and gramophone technologies. I will also share the pieces of information we have on the lives of these soldiers.  My talk will contextualize these recording sessions held in POW camps within the history of wartime anthropology. It will critically address the large-scale imperial, colonial, and racialized knowledge production endeavor by musicologists, linguists, ethnographers, and physical anthropologists that regarded the Prussian and Austro-Hungarian internment camps as “laboratories.” While questioning the conditions under which captives were turned into research subjects, it will interpret the repertoire through which the Armenian soldiers expressed themselves in the specific historical moment of 1916-1918. I will argue that the written documents and the voices passed onto us by the phonographic commission challenge the idea of an “archive” and/or a “museum” that the commission originally intended to put together.


Week 5 (special Tuesday session with Center for Jewish Studies: 4/24) Eduard Freudmann (Musician)

Performing the Jewish Archive”

Please see the following links for related information, including that pertaining to a performance on April 23rd.


Week 6 (5/3): Dr. Alisha Jones (Indiana University)


Week 7 (5/10): Dr. Michelle Stefano (American Folklife Center)


Week 8 (5/17): Laura Turner (Ph.d. candidate, Music) 

“Intimate Icons, Sacrosanct Places: Mount Airy, Surry County and the Construction of an Old-Time Epicenter” (dissertation chapter)


Week 9 (5/24): Lindsay Wright (Ph.D. candidate, Music)

“Teaching Talent: The Pedagogies of Shinichi Suzuki and Mark O’Connor” (dissertation chapter)


Week 10 (5/31): Ameera Nimjee (Ph.D. candidate, Music)

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