Hanns Eisler’s Music and Discourses from the Perspective of Gender

International Conference

Berlin, 04.-06.11.2022

Deadline: 01.04.2022

Hanns Eisler is one of the 20th century composers whose musical and theoretical output, biography and influence have been studied extensively. Within these fields, however, aspects relating to sexuality and gender have hardly been addressed. The aim of this conference is to begin to close this research gap by unveiling the significance of a gender perspective in Eisler's creative and theoretical output: Which constructs of masculinity and femininity do Eisler’s music convey? What is the gendered meaning of Eisler’s theoretical discourses on music and politics? How did Eisler position himself in relation to feminism, sexism and patriarchy in the different phases of his life; and what was the impact of these ideologies and positions on his output? To what extent did Eisler influence the work of female composers, artists, intellectuals, etc. and vice versa? How does gender intersect with other determining factors such as social class, nationality, race, sexuality or education in Eisler’s musical and theoretical output? How was / is Eisler's music integrated into male-only or female-only performance practices? And how were and are all these issues connected to his political ideology and the reception of his music before and after this death? Exploring these and related questions will permit fresh critical perspectives on the study of Eisler and will complement former approaches and interpretations of his output.

The conference is convened by Diego Alonso (Humboldt University, Berlin) and Peter Schweinhardt (International Hanns Eisler Society) in collaboration with the International Hanns Eisler Society, Berlin. The official languages of the conference are German and English. A publication with selected papers is planned. The conference will take place in person at the Institute of Musicology of Humboldt University, Berlin, as well as online (zoom).

Each proposal of individual papers (20 minutes followed by 10 minutes of discussion time) should include:
* The author’s name and affiliation
* Email address
* An abstract of no more than 250 words
* A short biography of no more than 120 words.

Please submit proposals to eisler.gender@gmail.com by the deadline of 1 April. The programme will be announced in April.

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