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SEM Statements on COVID-19

SEM Statement on Covid-19, March 20, 2020

The Society for Ethnomusicology extends its deepest solidarity to a world wounded by COVID-19. As we know from our studies, musicking is a social activity, fundamental to being human, and thus this historical moment of required social isolation strikes SEM’s membership at our core. But ethnomusicologists have also shown how music can help heal and build solidarity. Therefore, this is a time for an extra dose of kindness, compassion, and help for all those in need, especially performers and others who may be experiencing acute hardships during this pandemic.

To date, the following SEM chapters have been forced to cancel their meetings for 2020: Midwest, Niagara, Northeast, Southeast/Caribbean, and Southern Plains. These chapters are already at work on plans for 2021. The Society wishes all of its chapters the best as they continue their vital service on behalf of ethnomusicology.

Meanwhile, the SEM Board, Council, committees, publication editors, and staff are keeping all Society programs and operations moving forward. We will administer our prizes program entirely online for 2020. Please see individual prize pages in the
prizes area of the SEM website for updated submission procedures.

Though now working at home,
SEM staff at Indiana University Bloomington can be reached during regular business hours and stand ready to assist members and colleagues.

Thank you for your support of SEM. Stay safe!

Tim Cooley, SEM President


SEM Ethics Committee Statement in Support of Musicians and Institutional Support Staff at Colleges, Universities, Museums and Related Institutions during COVID-19 Emergency. Endorsed by the SEM Board, May 20, 2020.

Other Statements Endorsed by SEM

American Sociological Assocation, June 1, 2020
Letter to U.S. Congress on CARES Act Relief for Higher Education


American Philosophical Association, May 4, 2020
Statement Condemning Racism and Discrimination Against Asians and Asian Americans during COVID-19


American Sociological Association, April 22, 2020
A Call to Higher Education Administrators Regarding Student Educational Progress during COVID-19


Modern Language Association, March 2020
Statement on COVID-19 and Academic Labor


American Sociological Association, March 23, 2020
Statement Regarding Faculty Review and Reappointment Processes during the COVID-19 Crisis

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