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US: UNT Faculty Targeted For Saying Music Theory Isn’t White Supremacist

The University of North Texas College of Music will investigate a faculty-run academic journal responsible for showcasing critical responses to a claim that music theory is white supremacist.

A group of graduate students in the Division of Music History, Theory, and Ethnomusicology at the UNT College of Music released a statement recently, condemning the Journal of Schenkerian Studies (JSS), a publication run by faculty in the MHTE department.

According to the school’s page on the JSS, the journal focuses on “facets of Schenkerian thought, including theory, analysis, pedagogy, and historical aspects” – essentially, a discrete branch of music theory centered on theories developed by Austrian musician Heinrich Schenker. 

UNT professors Timothy Jackson and Stephen Slottow oversee the JSS. Students are criticizing the journal’s Volume 12 issue of “platforming racist sentiments” because assorted members of UNT faculty published in it their responses to a presentation by music theorist Philip Ewell.

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