BFE statement on Goldsmiths

The British Forum for Ethnomusicology has written to the Warden of Goldsmiths, University of London to express concern regarding proposed cuts to music teaching and staff.

The Music Department at Goldsmiths has played a significant role in broadening the study of music in UK higher education, in part through its ethnomusicology programmes. Among other contributions, Music at Goldsmiths has established an influential and interdisciplinary ethnographic approach to aural and visual cultures, an accomplishment celebrated earlier this year with the publication of Ethnomusicology and Its Intimacies: Essays in Honour of John Baily, which brings together chapters on performance, biography, and film by several distinguished ethnomusicologists.

Goldsmiths has also shaped Music HE through the people it has trained. Several prominent senior UK music scholars studied ethnomusicology at Goldsmiths as MA or PhD students, and the tradition of educating future leaders continues, with a number of recent MA or PhD graduates currently making important contributions to musical practice and research at universities in the UK and abroad.

As a subject area whose members make up only a small proportion of the staff in most UK music and anthropology departments, we are aware that we are only able to make a positive impact on studies when we work in academic units that are open and inclusive. Goldsmiths has long epitomised such inclusiveness as an institution with a commitment to both academic and practical music studies, and to popular, folk, and classical musics from within and outside the West.

We urge Goldsmiths to continue to invest in a department that promotes this broad understanding of music studies, and in this way to contribute to the development and transformation of that subject area in the years to come.

The Executive Committee of the British Forum for Ethnomusicology

Ruard Absaroka

Cassandre Balosso-Bardin

Morgan Davies

Byron Dueck

Andrew Green

Lea Hagmann

Stina Homer

Matthew Machin-Autenrieth

Luigi Monteanni

Min Yen Ong

Helena Simonett

Jason Stanyek

Peter Underwood

Amanda Villepastour

Stephen Wilford

David Wong