Society for Music Theory

Committee on the Status of Women

Activities at SMT Atlanta 1999

Wednesday, 10 November, 1999

7:00-10:00 am, CSW Business meeting and dinner

Friday, 12 November, 1999

12:15-2:00 pm, CSW Special Session

Invited Speaker: Suzanne Cusick, University of Virginia
"Music, Subjectivity, and "The Symbolic Order of the Mother": Challenges from the Italian Feminist Theory of Diotima"

Session Abstract:

Toward the end of her 1996 essay "Partire da se' e non farsi trovare," Luisa Muraro (the best-known theorist of Italy's feminist collective Diotima) invokes an idea about music to explain an idea about subjectivity as it is imagined within the framework Diotima calls "the symbolic order of the mother." Muraro's use of musical imagery represents a rare and welcome instance of music serving the rhetorical purposes of feminist theory. It invites a reciprocating use of Diotima's theory of female subjectivity to illuminate feminist music scholarship. This paper will explain more fully the idea of subjectivity Muraro found so analogous to music making; and it will explore ways Diotima's conception of both music and subjectivity challenges us to think and write differently about musical scores, performances, experiences, lives.

The respondent, Marion Guck, will consider some of the implications of this work for music theorists. Small-group discussions, led by members of the Committee, will follow the presentations. We expect to have bagels or some other food available at the session.

Saturday, 13 November, 1999

11:45-12:45, SMT Committee on the Status of Women, Affiliates Luncheon Meeting
All interested members of the SMT community are invited to join CSW members for a no-host luncheon where we can discuss issues of mutual interest and concern in an informal gathering. Location to be announced.

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Revised August 7, 2002