CFP: Music, Sound, and the Sacred

CFP for a special issue of the journal Religions on Music, Sound, and the Sacred, edited by me! https://www.mdpi.com/journal/religions/special_issues/music

Dear Colleagues,

This Issue of Religions addresses music and sound as integral parts of religious and spiritual expression. Inviting approaches inspired by the robust work on music, sound, and religious practice in ethnomusicology, anthropology, sound studies, and related disciplines, and echoing Prof. Rosalind Hackett’s call for more “sonically aware” ways of studying religion, it focuses on how music and sound are essential parts of religious practices, rather than simply ornaments or illustrations of religious concepts. Acknowledging that this centrality to the lived life of religion is also true of other arts and other sensory modalities, this Issue emphasizes religion as heard and sounded in practice.

This Issue is open to studies of music and sound in all areas of the world, and will give priority to vernacular religion—that is, religion as people understand, experience, and practice it. Some questions to address include the following: how are sounds and music made sacred? What work do sacred sounds do in religious practice? How do music and sound create sacred spaces, from the intimate scale of one voice, to the larger scale of urban religious soundscapes, or sounded sacred geography? How do social categories such as race, class, gender, caste, or ethnolinguistic groups, inflect sacred sounds as used by practitioners, and as heard by others? How do the meanings, or felt understandings, of such sacred sounds evolve when heard outside of their primary religious contexts? How might attention to soundings and hearing challenge the binarized categories of the sacred and profane, practitioner and scholar?

Prof. Anna Stirr
Guest Editor

Please note that this is an open access journal with a publications fee.

Photo: Ghatu dance in Tallo Gyaja, Gorkha, Nepal (photo by Anna Stirr)