Faculty Profile

Ellen Gray

Associate Professor of Music (2016)

Contact Information

grayl@dickinson.edu

Weiss Center for the Arts Room 210
717.254.8718

Bio

Lila Ellen Gray holds a PhD in cultural anthropology (2005), a MA in music (2000), and a graduate certificate in Women’s Studies from Duke University and a BA in humanities from New College of Florida (1993). Her teaching and research interests include: urban ethnomusicology; sound studies; gender; peripheral early musics; vocality; Portugal; the Lusophone world; and Europe’s South. Her book, Fado Resounding: Affective Politics and Urban Life (2013 Duke University Press), is a musical ethnography of fado, Portugal’s most celebrated musical genre, and was the recipient of the 2014 Woody Guthrie Award of the International Association for Popular Music (IASPM-US). Her present work concerns European early music communities, amateur musicianship and mass tourism, and the labors of sound, heritage, and the senses in the context of multiple forms of precarity across Europe’s South. Publications include articles in Ethnomusicology, History and Anthropology, and Anthropology and Humanism. She has previously taught at Columbia University and at the University of Amsterdam. At Dickinson, she teaches in both the fields of early music and ethnomusicology. Her courses are informed by longstanding commitments to interdisciplinary scholarship and emphasize the role of sound and music in shaping socio-cultural life.

Education

  • B.A., New College of Florida, 1993
  • M.A., Duke University, 2000
  • Ph.D., 2005

2018-2019 Academic Year

Fall 2018

FYSM 100 First-Year Seminar
The First-Year Seminar (FYS) introduces students to Dickinson as a "community of inquiry" by developing habits of mind essential to liberal learning. Through the study of a compelling issue or broad topic chosen by their faculty member, students will: - Critically analyze information and ideas - Examine issues from multiple perspectives - Discuss, debate and defend ideas, including one's own views, with clarity and reason - Develop discernment, facility and ethical responsibility in using information, and - Create clear academic writing The small group seminar format of this course promotes discussion and interaction among students and their professor. In addition, the professor serves as students' initial academic advisor. This course does not duplicate in content any other course in the curriculum and may not be used to fulfill any other graduation requirement.

MUAC 101 History of Music
Cross-listed with MEMS 200-08.

MEMS 200 History of Music
Cross-listed with MUAC 101-01.An introductory course for students with some previous music experience providing training in intelligent listening through chronological discussion and analysis of selected representative works from the Middle Ages to 1750.

MUAC 209 Ethnomusicology
This course explores the musical culture of six regions (Africa, India, Southeast Asia, Middle East, North American, and Europe) from the disciplinary perspective of ethnomusicology, a field that emphasizes the direct connections between social structures and musical sound/aesthetics. Students are exposed to the disciplinary methods of ethnomusicology, including its basic terminology and classification systems, and then apply these tools to the study of non-Western musics in a series of analytical assignments and presentations. Some of the questions posed in the class include: What differentiates music from sound, speech, and dance? How does music reflect cultural values and social structures? How does one learn to listen to non-western music? How has globalism affected local musical cultures? How does western terminology limit our understanding of another's music? What are the ideological and physical boundaries that hinder the experience of another culture's music?Offered every two years.

Spring 2019

MUAC 209 Ethnomusicology
This course explores the musical culture of six regions (Africa, India, Southeast Asia, Middle East, North American, and Europe) from the disciplinary perspective of ethnomusicology, a field that emphasizes the direct connections between social structures and musical sound/aesthetics. Students are exposed to the disciplinary methods of ethnomusicology, including its basic terminology and classification systems, and then apply these tools to the study of non-Western musics in a series of analytical assignments and presentations. Some of the questions posed in the class include: What differentiates music from sound, speech, and dance? How does music reflect cultural values and social structures? How does one learn to listen to non-western music? How has globalism affected local musical cultures? How does western terminology limit our understanding of another's music? What are the ideological and physical boundaries that hinder the experience of another culture's music?Offered every two years.

MUAC 355 Music and Sound Ethnography
This seminar introduces students to ethnography as a genre, as a set of practices, and as a repertoire of methods for understanding music and sound in relation to sociocultural life. Through close attention to select ethnographic texts, recordings, and films from the past three decades, students will engage with a diverse range of musical and sonic worlds. Some of the questions to be considered include: What is the relationship between data and story, fieldwork and ethnography, music and representations of music? What might it mean to study a particular musical scene or culture as an “insider” versus as an “outsider”? How can we think about sound and/or video recordings as ethnography and/or as method? What might be some of the stakes and ethics of conducting ethnographic research on music? Musical note reading not required. Interested non-majors who do not meet prerequisites are encouraged to seek permission of instructor.