Call for Papers

Call for Papers: YJMR Vol. 10, no. 2: "The Power of Timbre in Religion"

Extended Submission Deadline: April 15, 2024

What does prayer sound like? How might an instrument's tone invite divine encounter? How do racialized or gendered voices shape worshiping communities? How does the sonic identity of chant activate different states of consciousness?

Questions about the character of sounds and their effects in religious experiences animate this special issue of the Yale Journal of Music & Religion, guest-edited by Nathan Myrick (Mercer University) and Bo kyung Blenda Im (Yale University). We invite scholars to contribute articles and case studies that shed new light on religious life through a focus on timbre, broadly defined as a physical-perceptual differentiating quality of sound.

Possible topics might include:

  • vocal register as an index of theological ideas;
  • sonic markers of "the sacred";
  • the relationship of recording and production techniques to religious practitioners' timbral expectations;
  • relating places to sonic markers of identity;
  • ethical responses to instrumental effects;
  • juxtapositions between a sound's ethereal perception and material basis in instrumental interfaces and playing techniques;
  • religious pedagogies of hearing and producing sounds;
  • timbre in religious history;
  • religious practice in spite of timbre.

Manuscripts should be submitted on the YJMR webpage by April 15, 2024 (extended deadline) for consideration. Authors are welcome to contact the guest editors (myrick_nw@mercer.edu; bokyung.im@yale.edu) and Editor-in-Chief Jeffers Engelhardt (jengelhardt@amherst.edu) with questions regarding their submission.

YJMR also invites articles on any topic relating to music and religion. We accept these general issue article submissions on a rolling basis and send out calls for papers for special issues.


Please contact the editors with any other questions.