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University of Wisconsin-Madison
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University of Wisconsin-Madison
Program in Ethnomusicology, School of Music

Type of Program and Degrees Offered

Undergraduate and graduate curricula; M.A. in Ethnomusicology, Ph.D. in Ethnomusicology, and graduate minor in Ethnomusicology. Affiliated with School of Music. Collaboration with Folklore, Anthropology, and Media & Cultural Studies.

Program Focus

Area specializations include Southeast Asia (especially Indonesia), East Asia (especially Korea), North America, and the African diaspora; program emphasizes cultural studies, popular music studies, ethnography of performance, and area studies, with dual emphasis on historical and ethnographic methods.

Special Resources

Javanese gamelan performance ensemble (offered for credit), student music clubs (including Korean p’ungmul percussion, Russian ensemble, klezmer, and others). Computer-assisted music analysis lab; related online/electronic databases; special library collections; musical instrument collection (including a complete Javanese gamelan); South and Southeast Asia video archive, Modern Indonesian Culture Collection. Visiting artists in recent years from Indonesia, Korea, India, Cuba, and West Africa (for concerts and short term residencies and workshops). Summer Javanese gamelan program in conjunction with SEASSI (Southeast Asian Studies Summer Institute).

Full-Time Faculty in Ethnomusicology

Ronald M. Radano. (Ph.D., University of Michigan 1985) Professor of Music. African American music, world popular music; cultural theory, history.

R. Anderson Sutton. (Ph.D., University of Michigan 1982) Professor of Music. Music of Indonesia and Korea; performance and identity, music and media, music and hybridity, orality and literacy in music, and performance practice.

Affiliated Faculty

Kenneth M. George. (Ph.D., University of Michigan, 1989) Professor of Anthropology. Ritual speech, song, and violence in highland South Sulawesi, Islam and visual culture in Southeast Asia.

Michele Hilmes. (Ph.D., New York University, 1986) Professor of Media and Cultural Studies and Director of the Wisconsin Center for Film and Theater Research, in the Communication Arts Department. History of broadcasting in international perspective.

James Leary. (Ph.D., Indiana University, 1977) Professor of Folklore and Director of the Center for the Study of Upper Midwestern Cultures. Music and expressive culture of the peoples of the upper Midwest (native populations, immigrant cultures from Europe, Latin America, and Asia).

General Program Statement

The University of Wisconsin-Madison graduate program in ethnomusicology offers students a firm methodological basis in the discipline through courses covering the history and theory of ethnomusicology, critical methods in the study of culture, field work and historical methodologies, transcription and analysis, and contemporary interdisciplinary approaches. Concurrent with this course work, the student also gains familiarity with a broad range of musical activity worldwide through intensive surveys of selected cultural areas and global musical interconnections. These are supplemented by performance courses at the beginning and more advanced levels in Javanese gamelan. The program emphasizes mastery of scholarly skills in both historical and field research. Required course work at both levels includes courses in related disciplines (such as cultural studies, anthropology, folklore, language, and area studies), and doctoral students choose a minor (generally in one of these related disciplines). Facility with at least one foreign research language is required at the master’s level and with at least two at the doctoral level.

Financial Support

The UW-Madison offers several varieties of funding for graduate students: (a) University Fellowships for incoming graduate students (2-3 annually for ethnomusicology/musicology) and for dissertation writers; (b) Musicology Fellowships for graduate students in ethnomusicology and musicology (1-2 annually), (c) Teaching and Research Assistantship (2-4 annually for ethnomusicology). Students specializing in African, Asian, or Eastern European music are also frequently supported by FLAS (Foreign Language and Area Studies) fellowships, granted through the UW-Madison’s many federally-funded National Resource Centers (1-3 annually for ethnomusicology students).

Further Information

Professor R. Anderson Sutton, School of Music, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 455 North Park Street, Madison, WI 53706, USA. Phone: 608-263-1900; Fax: 608-262-8876; Email: rasutton@wisc.edu

Program Website


The content for University of Wisconsin-Madison was last updated July 13, 2010.

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