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Maxwell Williams

Overview

I’m a third-year PhD student in the musicology program. Before coming to Cornell, I received a B.A. in music from the University of Southampton, England where I completed a dissertation on intersections between punctuation form and schema theory in Mozart’s symphonic minuets, and was awarded the Lyttel Prize and the Edward Wood Memorial Prize for academic performance. I view my current work as loosely situated within hip-hop studies, while employing frameworks drawn from musicology, Black studies, African Diaspora studies, and postcolonial studies. From this perspective, I hope to engage with hip-hop as sound, exploring the often overlooked musical aspects of hip-hop production and performance, while considering how these intersect with social-political issues in the Black public sphere. I have given the conference papers, “Form and ‘galant schemata’ in Mozart’s symphonic minuets,” “‘You should be stronger than me’: aspects of gender construction and Amy Winehouse’s negotiated female subjectivity,” “‘Black Lip(ped) Bastard(s)’: Hip, Sonic Blacknesses and the Racialized Voice in ‘Neo-Bohemian’ Hip Hop,” and “From Black Power to HiiiPoWeR: ‘Hipness’ and the Sound of the Black Freedom Movement.”

Departments/Programs

  • Music