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Uniting Sound and Text
Graduate Student Conference

University of Pennsylvania Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures, February 8 & 9, 2007

Keynote Speaker:  Michael Steinberg, Brown University

Schläft ein Lied in allen Dingen/ Die da träumen fort und fort,
Und die Welt hebt an zu singen,/ Triffst du nur das Zauberwort.
- Joseph von Eichendorff

Sound - musical, vocal, or otherwise - maintains a perplexing relationship to the mute world of text. The purpose of this conference is to unravel some of the implications of the many intersections between the acoustic realm and that of literature. How is sound made manifest within literature and theory, and how does sound (and music in particular) function when laden with textual significance? Does music, in its abstractness, maintain a distance from and sense of superiority over linguistic discourse, or will it, as Eichendorff^Òs poem suggests, reveal itself at the command of a magic word? We welcome submissions in the fields of German culture, literature, music, history, philosophy, or linguistics, or from scholars engaging with any of the following or other topics relating to the union of sound and text: Opera and Song Voice and Vocalization Gender of Voice The Castrato E.T.A. Hoffmann/Romanticizing the Voice Silence/Dynamics of the Pause Wagner and the Gesamtkunstwerk R. Strauss and Hofmannsthal Foreign Accents, Modes of Speech The Scream/Acoustics of Trauma Religious Music in the German Sphere Sprechstimme and Sprechgesang Schoenberg, Adorno, Mann Brecht and his Musical Collaborators Folk Song Mahler and Des Knaben Wunderhorn Orchestral Song Radio, Hörspiele and Hörbücher Participants are invited to attend a Liederabend including the world premiere of a song by Alma Mahler, performed by mezzo-soprano Elif Ezgi Kutlu of the Curtis Institute of Music, on the evening of February 8. The music will be discussed in a roundtable at the close of the conference.
Deadline for Submission of Abstracts (1 page, in English): December 15, 2006 Submit Abstracts to:
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