Call for Submissions: Public Music Scholarship

Currents in Music Research (CMR) is currently accepting articles for our fourth biannual publication on the theme of public music scholarship. The deadline for submissions is April 1, 2024.

At the recent joint American Musicological Society/Society for Music Theory conference in Denver, multiple discussions were held regarding Public Music Theory and Musicology and  what is required to develop more inclusive and wide-reaching forms of music scholarship. These discussions followed numerous recent publications on the topic, such as The Oxford Handbook of Public Music Theory (2021), which center around scholarly community engagement and outreach and spaces where music scholarship has thrived outside of academia. In the wake of these discussions, we invite submissions that engage with and continue the ongoing conversation on public music scholarship. How can music scholars encourage a collaborative and public environment for music research? What are some potential ways music scholarship could change when shifted to the public locale? What benefits can we imagine for our work when our audience is a general public, as opposed to the scholars in our fields? CMR invites submissions on all these topics and more, and we are interested in scholarship that utilizes alternative formats alongside traditional essays.

Currents in Music Research is a space for discussion about pressing contemporary events and new, cutting-edge music scholarship. CMR is an open-access website led by graduate students in the University of Michigan’s Society for Music Research. Its areas of interest include, but are not limited to, the impact of social discourse on the lives of musicians and musical communities, music as a form of political activism, the influences of ideology on musical historiography, and pedagogical issues and strategies pertaining to the study of music and social discourse in the classroom. CMR negotiates the dual issues of accessibility in academia and the need for a timely avenue for critical conversation by taking the form of an open-access web-based journal.

CMR addresses pressing contemporary issues that would, in a typical journal publication process, lose their timeliness. Alongside blog posts that are accepted on a rolling basis, informal articles for the biannual, themed publication (such as the one advertised here) will be selected by our editorial board, which includes graduate students in the departments of ethnomusicology, historical musicology, and music theory at the University of Michigan and other affiliated scholars.

Submission Guidelines

Documents should adhere to the following guidelines:

  • Submit to this Google Form.
  • Submit a Microsoft Word file. 
  • Submissions of first drafts should be shorter and less formal than traditional journal articles (with a soft limit around 4,000 words).
  • Include an abstract (around 200 words).
  • All materials, including footnotes/endnotes and bibliographies, should adhere to the Chicago Manual of Style (17th edition).
  • CMR is particularly interested in integrating website-friendly formats like multimedia, interactive elements, etc., so please feel free to describe or include those in your submission.
  • If your submission will not take the form of a traditional research paper, please contact the editors at for guidance on how to submit.