Welcome to ICMuS Scholarship

In this section we have previously unpublished research from ICMuS Scholars including some specialist lecture notes, conference papers and papers. We also publish here additional resources to support our published work such as short position papers and working papers.


Dawn Weatherston

Music student as entrepreneur: An ethnographic study based in the universities of the North East

Building on existing ethnomusicological studies of conservatories and university music departments, and recent work on the working lives of musicians,  this PhD study takes a comparative view; illuminating processes at work in three different communities of university music students in the North East of England. The methodology, drawn from ethnography and anthropology, seeks to illustrate the students’ identities, perspectives and attitudes through observing their entrepreneurial behaviour, individually and within their wider communities, and exploring how they envisage their future life-worlds as working musicians.

(Dawn is a Teaching Fellow in Music and Entrepreneurship at Newcastle University and is completing her doctoral study at Durham University)

Here is a recent Conference Poster explaining some of her findings:

Dawn Weatherston Research Poster  

Report on Music Skills for Newcastle ICMuS CETL by Dr Paul Fleet 

The report is divided into two parts. The first gives a snapshot of the quantity and entry routes onto popular music courses (both undergraduate and foundation degree) that are on offer to students who wish to enter Further and Higher Education across the UK.  The second part discusses the types of music skills provision that are offered by selected FE and HE institutions across the North East and England. This information was gained by visiting and talking to various heads of departments, their staff, and their students involved on the courses. 

 CETL Music Skills Report  


Guidance notes on transcription of traditional music

Over several years, Dr Simon McKerrell has developed some useful transcription notes for the notation of English, Scottish, Irish and Welsh traditional music. These notes include visual methods of notation for awkward metres, intonation, and the performance practice of traditional music. These have primarily been developed as a teaching resource, feel free to use them and provide feedback if you have useful comments.

The notes are available Transcription Notes McKerrell


Dr Ian Biddle -- Falling in Love in Yiddish

The world of scholarship, it seems, is enthralled to a certain imagination of the world as available to the rigours of observation, audition and interrogation. However much we might want to critique the notion of scholarly objectivity, reason, or truth, there is, in the final analysis, something quite tenacious in their hold on us. Perhaps our ongoing discomfort with the idea of objectivity (or is scepticism a better word?) is driven by a desire to see off the charm of the authentic once and for all; or is it, more particularly, a symptom of something that has always been central to the tenets of the best scholarship for centuries – the notion that nothing should not be up for grabs in the exercising of critical practice? This paper seeks to examine some of the mechanisms by which this ‘hold’ is, as it were, held in place: how, that is, is it possible to be both a sceptic and a believer? As part of the paper I will share my love of the Yiddish language and talk about the place of love in my work on the Holocaust. What, I want to ask, does love have to do with the politics of Holocaust Studies? What does falling in love with source material say about objectivity? How can love possibly subsist here at this terrible place? What possible relevance could it have to the study of genocide, trauma, racism and the industrialisation of murder? But love here is not redemptive: it does not seek to wipe away or cover over those terrible crimes, nor does it seek to ameliorate them or somehow sanctify them (the very name Holocaust, of course, problematically invokes ‘sacrifice’ or ‘burnt offering’). So how might it subsist here? And how does it help us understand our own investments in what we do as scholars?

The paper is available to download Dr Ian Biddle Falling in Love in Yiddish.