A panel of brief (6-8 minutes), provocative statements that offer insight into where the study of hymns might go next.
What, when & where
The Hymn in Early America: A Roundtable
Long overlooked as a poetic and cultural form, hymnody has experienced a surge in scholarly interest in recent years. While musicologists have traditionally been most concerned with hymns, approaches such as lived religion, material and print cultures, performance studies, Native American studies, and African-American studies have all offered new ways of understanding perhaps the most popular verse genre in early America. The hymn as an object of study has also increasingly led to the converging of these approaches. This proposed panel will consist of brief (6-8 minutes), provocative statements that collectively help map the terrain in this new area of scholarship as well as offer insight into where the study of hymns might go next.
Possible topics include, but are not limited to, the following:
• Close and/or distant reading of hymn texts in any early American language (broadly conceived);
• Discussions of hymns’ poetic form from a theoretical and/or historical perspective;
• Material analysis of the production, use, etc. of hymnbooks, broadsides, and other related print forms;
• The role of handwriting, craftwork, and other haptic knowledges in the use of hymns;
• Analyses or theorizations of hymn performance in public and/or private contexts;
• Hymns as technologies of identity formation;
• Hymns and/as music or sound;
• The sexual and/or racial politics of hymns;
• Hymns and child studies;
• The hymn as a new window on religious practice and/or belief in early America;
• The role of hymns in histories of empire, missions, racial communities, ethnicities, etc.
Deadline & how to apply
Proposals of no more than 250 words should be sent by August 1 to Chris Phillips at firstname.lastname@example.org; notifications of acceptance will be sent a week later.