Welcome to the Midwest Chapter of the Society for Ethnomusicology website!

Please join us for the 2017 MIDSEM Annual Conference. This year we head to Oberlin College in Oberlin, Ohio, March 24-26, 2017.

A message from Jennifer Fraser on behalf of MIDSEM 2017:

Dear all,

Final preparations are underway to welcome you all to Oberlin. If you have not pre-registered, please go ahead and do so. I will use this information to generate name tags.

We’ve attached a lovely map made by my student, Catherine Lytle. You should find all the event locations, food highlights, and fun things on there, including The Allen Memorial Art Museum, which is ranked as one of the best museums on a college campus and has some fabulous exhibits.

If you are coming into town Friday afternoon please join us a Bibbins Hall in the Conservatory of Music between 4-6pm. After 6pm, meet us in the lobby of the Hotel at Oberlin. If you are just going to make it into town in time for the party starting at 8pm, please email me at jfraser@oberlin.edu for my address and directions to my house. All are welcome. I will have some wine, beer, and non-alcoholic options on hand, along with snacks, but feel free to bring something to contribute.

Saturday activities will start in Bibbins Hall at 8.30am. You’ll be able to pick up registration packet there.

Looking forward to welcoming you all to Oberlin next week and please don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any questions,

Jennifer Fraser

Click here for information regarding accommodations, parking, etc.

Click here for the current program.

Plans are being finalized for MIDSEM at Oberlin College March 24-26. If you are coming or even just thinking about coming, please pre-register using the following google form:

Looking forward to welcoming you all to campus in a few weeks.

Visit the MIDSEM Facebook page.

The keynote address at MIDSEM 2017 will be delivered on Saturday March 25 by Aaron A. Fox, Associate Professor of Music and Director of Center for Ethnomusicology at Columbia University. In line with our conference themes of applied/activist ethnomusicology, social justice, and community engagement & collaboration, Dr. Fox will deliver a talk entitled “Ways of Hearing: Decolonizing the Ethnomusicological Archive.”
Caption: “Aaron Fox, working with Iñupiaq elder Warren Matumeak (1927-2010).”
Caption: “Laura Boulton recording Iñupiaq singers Joe Sikvayugak and Otis Akhivgak, Barrow, Alaska 1946.”
Abstract: In this paper I will offer a broad view of “repatriation” and “recovery” projects undertaken in recent years by activists and ethnomusicologists working with archives of recorded sound.  Even when such work is focused on applied goals in the present, the turn toward repatriation suggests historical critique of ethnomusicology’s longstanding interdependence with militarism and colonialism  I connect the history of recording and “collecting” Native American music in the early 20th century to the later Cold War context in which contemporary ethnographic ethnomusicology emerged in its current institutionalized form — in part through a reification of the earlier 20th century archive as ahistorical cultural data,  I interrogate the view of sound “archives” (and the work they have done to discipline our understanding of “music”) as sites of memory and scholarship in order to stress their importance as sites of domination and resistance, suggesting  a phenomenology of the “archival recording” that assumes a history of hegemonic mediation.
Bio: In recent years Fox has focused on issues of cultural and intellectual property and the repatriation of Native American cultural resources, as part of a broader interest in cultural survival and sustainability and music-centered community activism. His current project entails work with several Indigenous communities to return and recover recordings held by Columbia University’s Center for Ethnomusicology, including collaborative work among the Inupiaq with Chie Sakakibara with Assistant Professor of Environmental Studies at Oberlin College. Fox’s publications on this topic include “The Archive of the Archive” in The Routledge Companion to Cultural Property (2017) and “Repatriation as Re-Animation Through Reciprocity” in The Cambridge History of World Music: Vol. 1 (North America). Other publications include his book, Real Country: Music and Language in Working-Class Culture, which was published by Duke University Press in 2004.

Any questions regarding the meeting can be directed to Jennifer Fraser at jfraser@oberlin.edu.

We look forward to seeing you on March 24-26 at Oberlin!

MIDSEM 2017 Program Committee: Joshua S. Duchan, chair (Wayne State University), Katherine Brucher (DePaul University), Katherine Meizel (Bowling Green State University), Kathryn Metz (Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum), and Michael B. Silvers (University of Illinois).

2 Responses to Home

  1. Peggy Latkovich says:

    I’m planning on attending and haven’t been to one of these in several years. Do we have to pre-register, or can we register when we arrive?

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