A Different Jazz Studies


The editorial board of Jazz Research Journal collectively authored this statement over a number of months in 2021 and 2022. We consider it a necessary and long overdue intervention into the field of jazz studies. The statement describes the jazz studies we want to see.


We commit to EXPLORATION and REFLECTION. We welcome submissions that explode distinctions between discipline, practice and research. We perceive jazz as a hybrid cultural form, messily entangled with artistic, social, scholarly, and professional boundaries. As such, we welcome submissions that experiment and reposition.


The journal does not prioritize any one notion of music autonomous of its production. We invite work that unsettles dominant critical approaches, monolithic teleology and Western cultural hegemony.


We commit to INCLUSIVITY and ACCESSIBILITY. Jazz studies is overwhelmingly a field of white male scholars, which limits its scope and damages its reputation. We oppose academic hierarchies propped up by precarious employment and working conditions that exploit or objectify musicians. We are particularly interested in amplifying the work of scholars who sit outside these hierarchies.


The journal condemns the structural inequalities perpetuated by global capitalism. We call for institutions that profit from jazz to restructure their activities to promote anti-racist and anti-ableist policies, LGBTIQ+ rights, and to combat the climate emergency.


We commit to KINDNESS and COMPASSION. We aspire to a jazz studies that is rigorous, generous and poetic. A jazz studies that advocates purposefully and consciously within industry, academy and public spaces. We seek to understand the joy in what we do.


This statement will be reviewed annually by the editorial board. Our aim is to be responsive to critique and to the needs of the ever-evolving jazz studies community.