Committee on the Status of Women

Mission Statement

The Committee on the Status of Women (CSW) promotes gender equity and feminist scholarship in areas related to music theory and serves as a repository of information about women and music. The CSW serves the Society for Music Theory in matters that are critical to all music theorists.


  • Chair: Judy Lochhead (2020)
  • Sara Bakker (2018), Sigrun Heinzelmann (2018), Anna Fulton (2019), Carmel Raz (2019), Laura Emmery (2020), Anton Vishio (2020)


  • Monitors and advocates for compliance with practices that promote gender equity, both within the Society and in the field of music theory in general.
  • Sponsors a special session at the Annual Meeting.
  • Holds a no-host luncheon at the Annual Meeting to discuss matters that relate to the mission of the CSW; all interested members of the SMT are invited to come to this.
  • Maintains a CSW Affiliates Facebook group web page to help members stay current on CSW activities and to get involved in related discussions and events; all interested members of the SMT are invited to join this Facebook group.
  • Maintains resources that relate to the mission of the CSW (see below).
  • Maintains a blog: Women in Music Theory.

Mentoring Programs

One of the CSW’s goals is to ensure as far as possible that women theorists’ rates of publication in music theory journals and presentation at music theory conferences match their relative distribution within the profession. Toward this end, the Committee offers two mentoring programs.

  • Proposal Mentoring Program

    This program pairs a female music theory graduate student or junior scholar (the mentee) with a senior music theorist (the mentor) who will provide feedback on a conference proposal for the Society for Music Theory’s annual conference, or a regional music theory conference. The mentor will then provide her or his opinion on how the mentee can strengthen the proposal’s writing style, organization, etc., to maximize the proposal’s chances of being accepted.
  • Virtual Research Group Program

    This program establishes groups of 3-4 peers (female graduate student, junior scholar, or senior scholar in music theory) who meet online. Groups will discuss writing goals, solutions to common writing problems, and get feedback from one another on their writing. Between meetings, peers will share their work and edit the work of one fellow peer. Groups will normally meet three times. Optionally, once a group has completed its meeting schedule, they may ask to be paired up with an outside mentor. This person will bring fresh eyes to the projects and offer tips on appropriate journals or publishers.

Please note that, in accordance with Item 2 of the SMT Mentoring Policy, the opinions expressed and advice given within both of the CSW’s mentoring programs are solely those of the individual mentor and do not represent the views or actions of the Society for Music Theory.

For details on becoming a mentee or mentor, please contact the Mentoring Program administrator.

Citation Format

The Executive Board asks that participants on committee sessions presented at the Annual Meeting use the following form of citation on their CVs for their participation:

  • Author/Presenter, title, Committee on the Status of Women session, Society for Music Theory Annual Meeting, city, date. In consultation with the Chair of Diversity and Professional Development.

It is up to presenters to decide for themselves whether their contribution is best represented on their CVs as scholarship, teaching, service, or something else.


Contact information

For questions about the CSW and its activities, please contact Judith Lochhead, CSW Chair.