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University of California-Berkeley
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University of California-Berkeley

Type of Program and Degrees Offered

Undergraduate and graduate curricula; M.A. and Ph.D. programs. Affiliated with the Department of Music, area studies programs, anthropology, folklore, ethnic studies, history, geography, and linguistics.

Program Focus

Area expertise in Asian (South, Southeast, East) and Middle Eastern musics, and musics of the Caribbean and the Americas; popular music studies; aesthetics and analysis; historical research; cognitive studies; and critical theory.

Special Resources

Music analysis laboratory, performance instruction with each lecture course, colloquium series and conferences, special library collections, central Javanese gamelan, gospel choir, and African Music ensembles on a regular basis.

Full-Time Faculty in Ethnomusicology

Benjamin Brinner. (Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley) Professor of Music and Chair. Southeast Asian music (Java, Bali); Middle Eastern music (particularly Israeli and Arab); cognition, improvisation, interaction and fusion.

Jocelyne Guilbault. (Ph.D., University of Michigan) Professor of Music. French- and English-speaking Caribbean music, Caribbean diasporas in the Americas, theory and method in popular music studies, aesthetics, cultural politics in musical production and circulation.

Tamara Roberts. (Ph.D., Northwestern) Assistant Professor of Music. Popular music of the United States, critical theory, political economy, and Performance Studies.

Bonnie C. Wade. (Ph.D., UCLA) Professor of Music, Group in Asian Studies. South Asia (India), East Asia (Japan), iconography, historical and contemporary studies in ethnomusicology.

Affiliated Faculty

Charles Briggs. (Ph.D., University of Chicago) Alan Dundes Distinguished Professor of Folklore and Professor of Anthropology. Linguistic and medical anthropology, social theory, modernity, citizenship and the state, race, and violence. Research with Latino/a populations in the Southwestern U.S. and in Latin America.

Hugh Humphrey. (Adjunct performance instructor) Caribbean music.

Andrew Jones. (Ph.D., University of California-Berkeley) Professor of Chinese literature and popular culture, including music.

C.K. Ladzekpo. (M.A., University of Ghana) Lecturer. Ghanian music and dance.

Mary McGann. Professor, Graduate Theological Union. Ritual studies and music.

Midiyanto. (M.A., Lewis and Clark College) Lecturer. Central Javanese gamelan and wayang.

Rita Sahai. (Adjunct performance instructor) North Indian vocal.

Douglas (Val) Serrant. (Adjunct performance instructor) Caribbean music.

Mary Ann Smart. (Ph.D., Cornell) Professor of Music. Gender studies; opera studies.

David Wessel. (Ph.D., Michigan State) Professor of Music. Director, Center for New Music and Audio Technology. Music cognition; interactive computer composition.

General Program Statement

Our program’s goal is to prepare students for a fruitful career of research and teaching in ethnomusicology. With music at the heart of our endeavor, we integrate and maintain a balance among several types of study: (1) knowledge of world musics; (2) cultural studies; (3) performance; (4) historical and current research and studies in music scholarship in general, and ethnomusicology in particular; (5) research skills; (6) other disciplinary and area studies. Our graduates also work in public sector ethnomusicology and in the publishing and computer industries.

Beyond a core of common courses, each graduate student works with an adviser to design an individual program. Personal interests are pursued in general courses such as Research Design for Ethnomusicologists, Tools of Ethnomusicological Research, Visual Sources for Documentation of Music, Theory and Methodology in Popular Music Studies, Historical Readings in Ethnomusicology, Interpretive Theories in Music, Ethnomusicological Analysis, Music in Mind, special topics seminars and independent readings courses with faculty, and through the Berkeley campus’s rich offerings of language and area studies. Students take courses not only in the Departments of Music, but complete their individual programs of study with courses in other departments such as Anthropology, Linguistics, South and Southeast Asia Studies, East Asia Languages & Culture, African-American Studies, Ethnic Studies, History, in the languages pertinent to their topic(s), and in interdepartmental team-taught offerings. Performance labs are integral to most lecture courses and most students perform in the Department’s Indonesian Gamelan, Gospel Choir, and African Drumming Ensemble. With a very small entering class each year, there is every expectation that each student will receive individualized guidance and emerge from the program with a Ph.D.

Financial Support

All graduate students admitted to UCB Music at the M.A. level receive five years of full support (four years if entering at the Ph.D. level), including fellowships and assistantships. Summer funding is also available on a competitive basis.

Further Information

Benjamin Brinner, University of California-Berkeley, Department of Music, Morrison Hall, Berkeley, CA 94720-1200, USA. Phone: 510-642-2678. Fax: 510-642-8480; Email: brinner@berkeley.edu

Bonnie C. Wade, University of California-Berkeley, Department of Music, Morrison Hall, Berkeley, CA 94720-1200, USA. Phone: 510-642-1460; Fax: 510-642-8480; Email: bcwade@berkeley.edu

Jocelyne Guilbault, University of California-Berkeley, Department of Music, Morrison Hall, Berkeley, CA 94720-1200, USA. Email: guilbault@berkeley.edu

Tamara Roberts, University of California-Berkeley, Department of Music, Morrison Hall, Berkeley, CA 94720-1200, USA. Email: tr@berkeley.edu

Melissa Hacker. Phone: 510-643-8724. Email: melhacker@berkeley.edu

Program Website


 The content for University of California-Berkeley was last updated June 25, 2010.

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