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Klaus P. Wachsmann Prize for Advanced and Critical Essays in Organology
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Purpose: To recognize a major publication that advances the field of organology through the presentation of new data and by using innovative methods in the study of musical instruments. The publication may be a monograph, an article, a unified series of articles, or a video/electronic media item.

Eligibility: Any organological publication regarding a specific instrument, set of instruments, class of instruments, instruments of a particular culture, instruments in general, or organology as a whole. The work must be published within the past three years, allowing the last year to overlap into the next group of prize years (e.g., the prize presented in 2018 is for works published in 2015, 2016, or 2017). No work may be considered twice.

Prize: $300 cash prize

Regularity: Biennially. Will be awarded in 2018.

Administration: The Klaus Wachsmann Prize Committee consists of a Chair and two other members appointed by the SEM President, as well as the most recent winner. The Chair will be responsible for monitoring the number of nominations in advance of the selection period, and for encouraging further nominations when they are insufficient according to the Committee's judgment. The Prize may be withheld by decision of the Committee.

Application Process: Nominations, including self-nominations, may be made by submitting one copy of the publication(s) to the Klaus Wachsmann Prize Committee through the SEM Business Office. It is recommended that copies of reviews be included when available. If in a language other than English, the nomination must be accompanied by a letter in English summarizing the work and explaining the unique nature of its contribution to the field. An English translation of the table of contents of a book or monograph should also be enclosed. If the submission is an article, an email attachment, rather than a hard copy, should be submitted. Applicants may submit only one publication during an application cycle.

Application Deadline: April 1, 2018.

Send Application To: Chair, Klaus Wachsmann Prize Committee, c/o Business Office, Society for Ethnomusicology, Indiana University, 800 E. 3rd St, Bloomington, IN 47405-3657. Electronic applications should be sent to sem@indiana.edu.




Allen Roda. Three articles in organology.

(Honorable Mention) Julia Byl. Antiphonal Histories: Resonant Pasts in the Toba Batak Musical Present.


Jacobson, Marion. Squeeze This! A cultural history of the accordion in America. University of Illinois Press, 2013.


Rahaim, Matt. "That Ban(e) of Indian Music: Hearing Politics in the Harmonium.”


Moehn, Frederick. "A Carioca Blade Runner, or How Percussionist Marcos Suzano Turned the Brazilian Tambourine into a Drum Kit, and Other Matters of (Politically) Correct Music Making." Ethnomusicology 53(2), 2009.       


Burgh, Theodore. Listening to the Artifacts: Music Culture in Ancient Palestine. T & T Clark International, 2006.         


Greene, Paul D. and Thomas Porcello. Wired for Sound: Engineering and Technologies in Sonic Cultures. Wesleyan University Press, 2005.      


DeWitt, Mark F. "The Diatonic Button Accordion in Ethnic Context: Idiom and Style in Cajun Dance Music." Popular Music & Society 26(3): 305-330. 2003.


Mohammad, Reza. Dâyeratâlomâref-e sâzhâ-ye Irân. (Encyclopedia of the Musical Instruments of Iran, vol. 1, titled Chrodophones in Regional Music)         


Theberge, Paul. Any Sound You Can Imagine: Making Music/Consuming Technology. University of New England Press. 1997.


Kido, Toshiro. Reconstructed Music Instruments of Ancient East Asia. 1994.


DeVale, Sue Carole. Career Achievement Award in recognition of her outstanding scholarship and publication.


Tatar, Elizabeth.


Kvifte, Tellef. Instruments and the Electronic Age: Toward a Terminology for a Unified Description of Playing Technique.  Solum forlag, Oslo, Norway. 1989.


Vennum, Jr., Thomas. The Ojibwa Dance Drum: Its Historical Construction. Smithsonian Institution Press.  1982.       


Zemp, Hugo. Tailler le Bambou. 1979.              










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