AMS San Antonio

1-4 November 2018
Call for Papers
Deadline: 5 p.m. EST, 16 January 2018

The 2018 Annual Meeting of the AMS will be held jointly with the Society for Music Theory (SMT) in San Antonio, Texas, from Thursday, 1 November to Sunday, 4 November. The Program Committee welcomes proposals for individual papers or poster presentations, formal sessions, evening panel discussions, sessions using alternative formats in all areas of music scholarship, seminar sessions, and sessions held jointly with the SMT. Please read the guidelines carefully: proposals that do not conform will not be considered.


Proposals for AMS sessions will be accepted according to the following categories:

Individual Proposals. Proposals should represent the presentation as fully as possible. A successful proposal typically articulates the main points of the argument or research findings clearly, positions the author’s contribution with respect to previous scholarship, and suggests the paper’s significance for the musicological community in language accessible to scholars with a variety of specializations.

In a new initiative, designed to enhance conversation between our societies, the Program Committees of both AMS and SMT invite proposals that address the following themes:

Proposals submitted to either AMS or SMT will be evaluated by the corresponding Program Committee in the usual manner. Accepted proposals may be programmed as SMT/AMS Joint Sessions by the two Program Committees or as part of a regular SMT or AMS session, depending on the number of acceptances on any given theme.

Those who wish their proposals to be considered according to one of these three themes (and potentially part of a Joint Session) will be able to indicate this preference at the time of submission.  Maximum length for proposal: 350 words.

Length of presentations. This year, each individual paper will be allotted thirty minutes: twenty minutes for the presentation and ten minutes for discussion. All sessions will last ninety  minutes.

Poster Presentations. Proposals for poster presentations should follow the guidelines for submission of individual proposals but also include an explanation of the content and goals of the graphic presentation. Technical guidelines for posters will be distributed with acceptance information. Maximum length for proposal: 350 words.

Formal Sessions. An organizer representing several individuals may propose a Formal Session, ninety minutes long and comprising three papers. For this type of proposal, organizers should prepare a rationale explaining the importance of the topic and the proposed constituent papers, including names of a respondent (if applicable), and a suggested chairperson. The organizer should also include a proposal for each paper that conforms to the guidelines for individual proposals detailed above. Formal Session proposals will be considered only as a whole: the proposed session’s consistency and coherence is an important part of the evaluation process.  Maximum length: 350 words for the rationale, and 350 words for each constituent proposal.

Evening Panel Discussions. Evening panel discussions are intended for more informal exchange of ideas and can cover a wide range of topics. For example, they may examine a central body of scholarly work, investigate a methodology or critical approach, or lay the groundwork for a new research direction. Evening panels should comprise participants’ brief (no more than ten minutes) position statements, followed by general discussion among panelists and audience. Evening panel proposals should outline the rationale and issues behind the proposal, identify the panelists, describe the activities envisioned, explain why each panelist has been chosen, and identify the duration of the session. Panels may have as much time as they wish between 8:00 p.m. and 11:00 p.m. Maximum length for proposal: 500 words.

Alternative-Format Daytime Sessions. Examples of alternative formats include, but are not limited to, sessions combining performance and scholarship, sessions discussing an important publication, sessions featuring debate on a controversial issue, and sessions devoted to discussion of papers posted online before the meeting. They may be proposed by an individual or group of individuals, a Study Group, a smaller society that has traditionally met during the Annual Meeting, or an AMS committee wishing to explore scholarly issues. Position papers delivered as part of alternative-format sessions should be no more than ten minutes long. Proposals for alternative-format sessions should identify the participants, outline the intellectual content of the session, and describe the structure of the session. Sessions will last ninety minutes. Maximum length for proposal: 500 words.

Seminar Sessions. Two seminar sessions are proposed and approved for San Antonio.

1. "On the Academic Pipeline: Tenure, Pedagogy, and Coalition" (conveners: Ellie M. Hisama and Matthew Leslie Santana)

2. "Time in Opera" (conveners: Kunio Hara, Laura Moeckli, and Colleen Renihan)

Follow the links to learn more about the seminar topics.

Proposals are reviewed anonymously. The Program Committee, in consultation with the conveners, chooses three to six abstracts for each seminar topic. If there are not enough abstracts of sufficient quality to fill a seminar, the seminar will not be offered. Maximum length for Seminar paper proposals: 350 words. For further information, see the Seminar FAQ.


The Program Committees of the two societies invite proposals for joint sessions, bringing together participants from both societies. These sessions may address the three topics listed above or any other, taking the form of a joint session Paper Panel or an Alternative-Format joint session. Guidelines for both are found below.

Joint Session Paper Panel. Such sessions will represent both disciplines and feature multiple approaches, methodologies, or framing discourses. Joint session proposals will be considered as a unit by the program committees of the AMS and the SMT, and will be programmed only if accepted by both committees. Proposals must include a session rationale and abstracts for each paper on the session. The rationale must identify the number of participants from each society. Paper abstracts included in a joint session proposal are components of the session proposal as a whole and will not be considered for individual presentation. All proposals will be evaluated anonymously and should contain no direct or indirect signal of authorship. Maximum length: 350 words for the rationale and 350 words for each constituent paper’s abstract.

Papers will be allocated thirty minutes each, with twenty minutes for the paper and ten minutes for discussion. Proposals may be for sessions of ninety minutes (three papers), two hours (four papers), or three hours (six papers). Two- or three-hour sessions may involve a respondent.
Please note that AMS-SMT Joint Paper Panels may be scheduled during evening sessions, starting at 8:00 p.m.

Alternative-Format Joint sessions are also encouraged. Participants in alternative-format sessions might discuss an important publication, a controversial issue, or combine performance and scholarship. The session might also include “flipped” papers, “lightning talks,” and the like. Proposals for alternative-format joint sessions should outline the intellectual content of the session, the participants and their society affiliations, and the structure of the session. As with the joint session paper panels, alternative-format joint sessions should represent both disciplines. Proposals will be considered as a unit by the two program committees and will be programmed only if accepted by both committees. Proposals may be for sessions of ninety minutes, two hours, or three hours. Maximum length for proposal: 1000 words.

Please note that joint AMS-SMT Alternative-Format Joint Sessions may be scheduled during evening sessions, starting at 8:00 p.m.

Proposals for Joint Paper Panels and Joint Alternative-Format sessions must be submitted via this shared web site.


The Program Committee will evaluate and discuss Individual, Formal Session, and Poster proposals anonymously (i.e., with no knowledge of authorship). All proposals are evaluated on a scale from zero to five by the entire committee. The scores are collated, averaged, and ranked accordingly, after which the committee meets to discuss final selections. During this meeting, the committee selects the most promising proposals and arranges them in sessions. With individual proposals, when all but twenty-five openings have been filled, the committee reveals authors of proposals and fills the openings to help ensure balance between senior and junior scholars. Poster proposals, on the other hand, will be evaluated entirely anonymously.

Authors of accepted submissions will be invited to revise their proposals for the Program and Abstracts, distributed at the meeting; the version read by the Program Committee may remain confidential.


No one may appear on the San Antonio program more than twice. An individual may deliver a paper, participate in a Seminar, or deliver a lecture-recital or concert;  and appear one other time on the program, whether participating in an evening panel discussion or alternative format session, functioning as a chair-organizer of a formal session, or serving as a respondent.  Participation in extra-programmatic offerings such as study group meetings or committee presentations (e.g., the Committee on Career-Related Issues) does not count as an appearance for this purpose. Only one submission per author will be accepted. Those who presented papers at the 2017 AMS meeting may not submit proposals for the 2018 meeting. Organizers of formal sessions, evening panel discussions, seminars, or alternative format sessions may not also present a formal paper in the same year or in the preceding/succeeding one, although participants may do so. Authors may not submit the same proposal to both the AMS and SMT program committees. If applicable, authors must indicate that they have submitted different proposals to the AMS, the SMT, and/or a Joint Session, and indicate which proposal should take priority should more than one be accepted by the respective committees.


Proposals must be received by 5 p.m. EST, 16 January 2018.

Proposals are to be submitted electronically. Follow this link to access the online submission form.

Please note that proposal submission ceases precisely at the deadline. To avoid technical problems with submission please submit at least twenty-four hours before the deadline.

Proposals received after the deadline cannot be considered.

A FAQ on the proposal submission process is available.

Those unable to submit a proposal electronically should contact the AMS office by 10 January 2018 regarding accommodation procedures.

Receipts will be sent to all who submit proposals by the beginning of February 2018. Notifications of the Program Committee’s decisions are sent after thei spring meeting, about 20 April.

AMS committees and Study Groups; Affiliated societies. Sessions organized by such groups are not reviewed by the Program Committee. They should contact Robert Judd at the AMS office to schedule their meetings.

Other questions? See the Proposal Submission FAQ.

—Carol A. Hess
Program Committee Chair

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