International Workshop "Music Torture: Research Perspectives"

Friday, 29 April 2011, University of Göttingen

The use of music as an instrument of torture became widespread public knowledge following media reports of US military use of music in this way. Recent publications on music in the Third Reich have also discussed how music was used as a means of torture and cruel, inhumane and degrading punishment in concentration camps. First indications suggest, however, that these examples may only be the tip of the iceberg, and that the connection between music and torture has a longer and also more global history.

The aim of this international, interdisciplinary workshop was to establish the current state of research on this issue and to establish research priorities in this area. Invited speakers included music historians and music psychologists with research backgrounds in relevant areas as well as experts on the impact of torture and rehabilitation of survivors of torture.


Stefan Keßler,
Chair, Amnesty International Germany

Prof. Suzanne G. Cusick
Musicologist, New York University

Dipl. Psych. Sibylle Rothkegel
Psychotherapist specialising in trauma and rehabilitation, Free University Berlin

Dr. Juliane Brauer
Political scientist/historian, Max Planck Institute for Human Development, Berlin

Dr. Anna Papaeti,
Musicologist, University of Göttingen

Prof. Gunther Kreutz
Music psychologist, University of Oldenburg

Tristan Chytroschek
Filmmaker/director of "Musik als Waffe"; a&o buero filmproduktion