SMT 2020: Committee on Race and Ethnicity Session in Minneapolis

Call for Proposals:

“Stories from the Frontlines”

Committee on Race and Ethnicity session at 2020 AMS/SMT meeting


Issues pertaining to class in higher education today remain as pervasive as ever—whether it be in connections between poverty and lack of access to educational resources, cost of living issues faced by those with student debts, the professional and intellectual challenges faced by scholars in positions of under- or contingent employment, and so on. Moreover, even though people of color are affected disproportionately by class-related issues, this is a phenomenon that affects everyone in some fashion.

In this light, the Committee on Race and Ethnicity is sponsoring a session on issues at the intersection of race and class at the 2020 meeting of the Society for Music Theory and the American Musicological Society in Minneapolis, MN. As evident in its title, “Stories from the Frontlines,” this session is meant to give scholars who have personally experienced or addressed issues regarding class inequality, and its intersection with race, a chance to share their stories with the music theory community. The session will feature such stories by several invited speakers, and also Q&As with these speakers, and breakout discussions on the subject of the speakers’ stories among the members of the audience. The Committee would like to invite to the session especially scholars who have faced, or are facing, employment contingency, to give them a chance to share their experiences on this topic. Therefore, we invite proposals from contingent scholars—including, but not limited to, graduate student instructors and teaching assistants, lecturers, adjuncts, visiting assistant professors, professors of practice, and clinical track faculty—to present at this session. We are interested especially in hearing stories of how contingent or under-employment has affected one’s job prospects, family life, and opportunities for research and intellectual development.

Presentations will be in the form of ten-minute “lightning talks,” and all proposals will be evaluated anonymously by the current members of the Committee on Race and Ethnicity. Four speakers will be chosen to present at the session—however, anyone who submits a proposal will be welcome to share their story on the Committee’s website, on a page dedicated to this purpose.


Please submit your proposal as a PDF document to, by midnight Eastern Time on February 18, 2020. (Please indicate in the body of the email your name, your affiliation (if any), and your AV requirements.)

Proposals should be ideally around 300 words, given the length of each presentation, but no more than 500 words in length. They should exclude the author’s name and any other direct or indirect signal of authorship, and “author” tags must be removed from electronic files. Supplementary materials are not necessary, but may be submitted to substantiate an argument, demonstrate results, or clarify the proposal’s relationship to prior scholarship. Supplementary materials will not be counted within the 500-word limit, but must not exceed four pages, and any supplementary text (e.g., example captions) should not add appreciably to the word count or content of the proposal.

Questions may be directed to Somangshu Mukherji, the Chair of the Committee on Race and Ethnicity, at