Friday, April 27th,12:30-1:30pm, TGS Commons
Led by Professor Alisha Jones (Indiana University)
Professor Jones has selected the introduction to Jennifer Stoever’s The Sonic Color Line, through which we will consider Jones’s new research on womanist and anti-oppressive listening(s). We ask that you prepare this reading for an open discussion session, so that way we can continue these lines of questioning and listening throughout the panels.
Professor Jones will also be giving a pre-conference talk on Thursday, April 26th, hosted by the Northwestern Musicology Colloquium, titled, “I Am Delivert!: Vocalizing Black Men’s Testimonies of Deliverance from Homosexuality in Pentecostal Worship” (RCMA-160, 4:30 PM)
Saturday, April 28th, 5:15-6:45, RCMA, McClintock Recital Hall
Professor Olivia Bloechl (University of Pittsburgh)
“On Being Vulnerable With Music”
When singers perform vulnerable states, what does their performance do? I’m especially interested in a phenomenon I’ve experienced repeatedly, as a performer and a listener, in which vulnerable performance affects how it’s possible to be human, in relation to other human and non-human animals and to physical environments. Taking as examples two operas–Lacoste’s Philomèle (1705) and Du Yun, Angel’s Bone (2011/2016)–and a cover song–Tanya Tagaq’s version of Nirvana’s “Rape Me,” from Retribution (2016)–I’ll ask us to think about vulnerable vocal performance that testifies to physical and sexual violence. Presenting first-person testimony of trauma–even fictional testimony–in an artful setting raises difficult questions about what it means to transform suffering into aesthetic, moral, or political value. Yet these examples are also interesting for what they can tell us about whose vulnerability and suffering matter, as they all demand recognition of harm visited on those whose bodies disqualify them as normatively human lives. They also suggest distinct purposes for performing vulnerability, ranging from tragedy to moral provocation to refusing gendered coloniality.