Faculty Development Seminars
Designed to enhance the quality of humanities research at UW-Madison and to promote sustained collaboration and dialogue across disciplinary lines, the Center for the Humanities and Institute for Research in the Humanities (with major support from the Dean of the College of Letters and Science) inaugurated Faculty Development Seminars in the Humanities in the spring of 2007.
The Seminars enable an individual senior faculty member, or a team of two senior faculty members, to teach fellow faculty for ten weeks (a weekly two hour seminar) on a focused and vital topic. The presiding faculty receive course credit and their department receives funds for a replacement lecturer. The ten faculty members taking the course receive research funds to recognize their selection and to cover the costs of materials.
This faculty seminar proposes an alignment of music studies, global studies, and race studies as part of a new line of inquiry in the critical study of culture. It will place front and center this set of questions: Why did US black music become the central measure of aesthetic value at the onset of the modern, global metropolis, and in what ways did its sonic contours re-cast the aural and cultural environments of the new imperial city? How, moreover, did the musical production of race give form to modern, popular affective capacities—to the very ways in which world-metropolitan listening audiences learned to consume a racial feeling in sound? By exploring a range of interactive researches—from the phenomenology of listening to the commodification of music to the sonic transformation of the international public sphere—the seminar will seek to gain a new appreciation of the audible constitution of race and its significance in the making of modern global history.
Beginning in 2007, Center-sponsored Faculty Development Seminars have ranged in topics, from policies for international governance to theories of visuality, from prolonged study of Ovid to the proper aims of higher education.
The seminars may be led by an individual faculty member or may be team taught by two faculty members from different departments in the humanities (both faculty members will receive teaching credit and their departments will receive funds for replacement lecturers). Topics should be broadly conceived and of potential interest to a large number of humanities disciplines.