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AMS Boston 2019: Call For Proposals

Deadline: 11:59 p.m. ET, 15 January 2019

The 2019 Annual Meeting of the AMS will be held in Boston, Massachusetts, from Thursday, 31 October to Sunday, 3 November. The Program Committee welcomes proposals for individual papers or poster presentations, formal sessions, evening panel discussions, sessions using alternative formats in all areas of music scholarship, and seminar sessions. Please read the guidelines carefully: proposals that do not conform will not be considered. Proposals will be accepted according to the following categories:

Individual Proposals.

Proposals should represent the presentation as fully as possible. A successful proposal typically articulates the main points of the argument or research findings clearly, positions the author’s contribution with respect to previous scholarship, and suggests the paper’s significance for the musicological community in language accessible to scholars with a variety of specializations. Continuing the initiative begun in 2017 designed to enhance conversation on particular topics, the Program Committee invites proposals that address the following themes:

  • Ecologies and Soundscapes
  • Music and Revolution
  • Discourses of Black Music

Those who wish their proposals to be considered according to one of these three themes will be able to indicate this preference at the time of submission.

Maximum length for proposal: 350 words.

Length of presentations. Each individual paper will be allotted thirty minutes: twenty minutes for the presentation and ten minutes for discussion. All sessions will last ninety minutes.

Poster Presentations.

Proposals for poster presentations should follow the guidelines for submission of individual proposals but also include an explanation of the content and goals of the graphic presentation. Technical guidelines for posters will be distributed with acceptance information.

Maximum length for proposal: 350 words.

Formal Sessions.

An organizer representing several individuals may propose a Formal Session, ninety minutes long and comprising three papers. For this type of proposal, organizers should prepare a rationale explaining the importance of the topic and the proposed constituent papers, including names of a respondent (if applicable), and a suggested chairperson. The organizer should also include a proposal for each paper that conforms to the guidelines for individual proposals detailed above. Formal Session proposals will be considered only as a whole: the proposed session’s consistency and coherence is an important part of the evaluation process.

Maximum length: 350 words for the rationale, and 350 words for each constituent proposal.

Evening Panel Discussions.

Evening panel discussions are intended for more informal exchange of ideas and can cover a wide range of topics. For example, they may examine a central body of scholarly work, investigate a methodology or critical approach, or lay the groundwork for a new research direction. Evening panels should comprise participants’ brief (no more than ten minutes) position statements, followed by general discussion among panelists and audience. Evening panel proposals should outline the rationale and issues behind the proposal, identify the panelists, describe the activities envisioned, explain why each panelist has been chosen, and identify the duration of the session. Panels may have as much time as they wish between 8:00 p.m. and 11:00 p.m.

Maximum length for proposal: 500 words.

Alternative-Format Daytime Sessions.

Examples of alternative formats include, but are not limited to, sessions combining performance and scholarship, sessions discussing an important publication, sessions featuring debate on a controversial issue, and sessions devoted to discussion of papers posted online before the meeting. They may be proposed by an individual or group of individuals, a Study Group, a smaller society that has traditionally met during the Annual Meeting, or an AMS committee wishing to explore scholarly issues. Position papers delivered as part of alternative-format sessions should be no more than ten minutes long. Proposals for alternative-format sessions should identify the participants, outline the intellectual content of the session, and describe the structure of the session. Sessions will last ninety minutes.

Maximum length for proposal: 500 words.

Seminar Sessions.

The two-stage submission process for Seminar Sessions will be followed for 2019. The submission deadline for stage one, Seminar Topics, is 8 October 2018. The chosen topics will be announced on 2 November 2018. See below for details. The submission deadline for stage two, Seminar paper proposals, is 15 January 2019. As with other proposals, Seminar paper proposals are reviewed anonymously. The Program Committee, in consultation with the conveners, chooses three to six abstracts for each seminar topic. If there are not enough abstracts of sufficient quality to fill a seminar, the seminar will not be offered.

Maximum length for Seminar paper proposals: 350 words.

For further information, see the Seminar FAQ.

Program Committee Procedures.

The Program Committee will evaluate and discuss Individual, Formal Session, and Poster proposals anonymously (i.e., with no knowledge of authorship). All proposals are evaluated on a scale from zero to five by the entire committee. The scores are collated, averaged, and ranked accordingly, after which the committee meets to discuss final selections. During this meeting, the committee selects the most promising proposals and arranges them in sessions. With individual proposals, when all but twenty-five openings have been filled, the committee reveals authors of proposals and fills the openings to help ensure balance between senior and junior scholars. Poster proposals, on the other hand, will be evaluated entirely anonymously. Authors of accepted submissions will be invited to revise their proposals for the Program and Abstracts, distributed at the meeting; the version read by the Program Committee may remain confidential.

Application Restrictions.

The Program Committee wishes to give as many different people as possible opportunities to participate and has therefore set a limit on any one person’s programmatic activity. Only one proposal per author may be submitted. No one may appear on the Boston program more than twice.* An individual may deliver a paper or convene/participate in a Seminar Session and appear one other time on the program, whether participating in an evening panel discussion or Alternative Format session, functioning as a chair-organizer of a formal session, or serving as a respondent, but may not deliver a lecture-recital or concert.

*Participation in offerings such as Study Group meetings or committee presentations (e.g., the Committee on Career-Related Issues) does not count as an appearance for this purpose.

The “alternate years” rule.

Those who presented papers or organized Joint Sessions, Formal Sessions, Seminars, Alternative Format sessions, or lecture-recitals at the 2018 AMS meeting may not submit proposals for the 2019 meeting. Participants in 2018 Evening Panel discussions and Alternative Format sessions may submit proposals for 2019. This rule will also apply in future: those whose work is accepted for 2019 presentation will be restricted similarly in 2020.

Submission Procedure. 

Proposals must be received by 11:59 p.m. ET, 15 January 2019.

Proposals are to be submitted electronically.

The deadline for submissions has now passed.

Please note that proposal submission ceases precisely at the deadline. To avoid technical problems with submission please submit at least twenty-four hours before the deadline. Proposals received after the deadline cannot be considered. A FAQ on the proposal submission process is available at the website. Those unable to submit a proposal electronically should contact the AMS office before 10 January 2019 regarding accommodation procedures. Receipts will be sent to all who submit proposals by the beginning of February 2019.

Notifications of the Program Committee’s decisions are sent after their spring meeting, about 30 April. AMS committees and Study Groups; Affiliated societies. Sessions organized by such groups are not reviewed by the Program Committee. They should contact Robert Judd at the AMS office to schedule their meetings. Study Group organizers should review the Study Group info page. Other questions? See the Proposal Submission FAQ.

—Holly Watkins

Program Committee Chair