Georgia Cowart



Georgia J. Cowart has published three books and a number of articles on music, the arts, and cultural politics in early modern France. (See Publications and Professional Activities.) Her last book, The Triumph of Pleasure: Louis XIV and the Politics of Spectacle (University of Chicago Press, 2008), focuses on the shifting intersections of the arts, ideology, and aesthetics at the court of Louis XIV and in the Parisian public sphere in the late 17th and early 18th centuries.  She is currently at work on a book manuscript, “Performing a New France: Watteau, Spectacle, and the Sunset of Absolutism.”

From 2007-09, Prof. Cowart served as Sylvan C. and Pamela Coleman Memorial Fund Senior Fellow in Art History at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, and as guest curator of the Met exhibition “Watteau, Music & Theater” (Fall 2009). From 2011-12 she served as Marta Sutton Weeks Senior Fellow at the Stanford Humanities Center.

Prof. Cowart has received a number of teaching and research awards, as well as fellowship support from the National Endowment for the Humanities (2002-03, 2011) and the American Council of Learned Societies (1999-2000), and has presented her work and chaired panels at conferences, symposia, and international seminars in France, England, Belgium, Canada, Switzerland, Norway, and the U. S. From 2002-07 she served as chair of the department of music at CWRU and co-director of the Joint Music Program between CWRU and the Cleveland Institute of Music. From 2006-09 she served as president of the Society for Seventeenth-Century Music, and she currently serves on the Editorial Board of the Journal of the American Musicological Society.

Recent and forthcoming publications include:

“Sirènes et Muses: De l’éloge à la satire dans la fête théâtrale, 1654 – 1703.”  Special issue, XVIIe siècle, ed. Larry Norman (January, 2012, accompanied by a website

“Editorial: Music, Institutions, and the Failure of Nations.” Journal of the American Musicological Society 66/1 (Spring, 2013)

“Opera Audiences.” Oxford Handbook of Opera, ed. Helen Greenwald. Oxford: Oxford University Press (in press; expected publication date: 2014)

“Music in 17th-Century France” (with Peter Bennett). Cambridge Companion to French Music (expected publication date: 2014)

“Musical Aesthetics in the French Enlightenment.” Cambridge Companion to French Music (expected publication date: 2014)

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Haydn Hall



Music, Art and Cultural Politics in Early Modern France
Art, Music and the Museum
Opera and Its Audiences


M.M., Indiana University
Ph.D., Rutgers