PhD Communication Studies (2011), McGill University; MFA Electronic Music and Recording Media (2006), Mills College; AB with Honors (1995), American Studies, Brown University
Dr. Tara Rodgers is an Assistant Professor of Women’s Studies, a Distinguished Faculty Fellow in Digital Cultures & Creativity, and an affiliate faculty of American Studies and Musicology & Ethnomusicology. She also coordinates the Women’s Studies Multimedia Studio. Prior to joining the department she was a Canada-U.S. Fulbright Scholar (2006-07) and Visiting Faculty in Sound at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (2004-05). Her research and teaching interests span sound and popular music studies, media and technology studies, feminist theory and historiography.
Her book, Pink Noises: Women on Electronic Music and Sound, was published by Duke University Press in 2010. It received the 2011 Pauline Alderman Book Award for outstanding scholarship on women in music from the International Alliance for Women in Music. A collection of twenty-four interviews with women who are DJs, composers, improvisers, instrument builders, and sound artists, Pink Noises has been called “essential feminist reading… also meant to resonate forcefully beyond the realm of women’s studies” (MachineMusic.org) and noted for “immortalizing a talented, diverse collection of female artists, as well as encouraging women to get involved in creating for themselves” (Feminist Review/Elevate Difference). Rodgers’ current project is a feminist history of synthesized sound. Based on archival research of acoustics textbooks, inventors’ correspondence, and synthesizer product manuals, it examines how cultural notions of identity and difference are expressed in the technical language and visual iconography commonly used to represent sounds.
Rodgers is also a composer and sound artist. She has released numerous recordings (as Analog Tara) including a track on the Le Tigre Remix 12″; performed and exhibited at venues such as Eyebeam (NYC) and the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art (Toronto); and led audio workshops at Ladyfest festivals and elsewhere across the U.S. and internationally. She currently serves on the editorial board of Leonardo Music Journal (MIT Press), an annual publication documenting creative sonic expressions at the intersections of contemporary arts, sciences, and technologies.
Major Areas of Research:
- Sound and popular music studies
- Media and communication history
- History and philosophy of science and technology
- Feminist theories and historiography
- Electronic music and sound art practice
Rodgers, Tara. Pink Noises: Women on Electronic Music and Sound (Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2010).
Rodgers, Tara. “‘What, for me, constitutes life in a sound?’: Electronic Sounds as Lively and Differentiated Individuals.” American Quarterly 63, no. 3 (Fall 2011), “Sound Clash: Listening to American Studies,” special issue edited by Kara Keeling and Josh Kun.
Sterne, Jonathan, and Tara Rodgers. “The Poetics of Signal Processing.” differences: A Journal of Feminist Cultural Studies 22, no. 3 (Fall 2011), “The Sense of Sound,” special issue edited by Rey Chow and James Steintrager; German translation appears in Zeitschrift für Medienwissenschaft (2011).
Magnet, Shoshana, and Tara Rodgers. “Stripping for the State: Whole Body Imaging Technologies and the Surveillance of Othered Bodies.” Feminist Media Studies 12, no. 1 (2012, available online in Spring 2011).
Rodgers, Tara. “Toward a Feminist Epistemology of Sound: Refiguring Waves in Audio-Technical Discourse.” In Philosophy After Irigaray, edited by Mary Rawlinson, Danae Mcleod, and Sara McNamara (Albany: SUNY Press, forthcoming).
Rodgers, Tara. (Guest curator.) Sounds Like Now! CD with introductory essay for special issue on improvisation and technology, Leonardo Music Journal 20 (2010).
Rodgers, Tara. (Guest editor.) “Sound and the Social Organization of Space” special section. Leonardo Music Journal 16 (2006).
Rodgers, Tara. “On the Process and Aesthetics of Sampling in Electronic Music Production.” Organised Sound 8, no. 3 (2003): 313-20; reprinted in Electronica, Dance, and Club Music, edited by Mark J. Butler (Ashgate, 2011).
- WMST 250: Introduction to Women’s Studies: Women, Art & Culture
- WMST 298B; 498T/698X: Media & Feminist Studies
- WMST 400: Theories of Feminism
- WMST 488R: Women’s Studies Senior Seminar: Gender & Popular Music
- HDCC 208C: Digital Cultures & Creativity Seminar: Sound Cultures & Practice
- HDCC 209B: Practicum in Digital Cultures & Creativity
Tara Rodgers/Analog Tara – http://www.pinknoises.com/
Pink Noises at Duke University Press – http://www.dukeupress.edu/Catalog/ViewProduct.php?productid=13784
Pink Noises on Facebook – http://www.facebook.com/pages/Pink-Noises/263010704364
UMD Women’s Studies Multimedia Studio on Facebook – http://www.facebook.com/pages/Womens-Studies-Multimedia-Studio-University-of-Maryland/264468276902306