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Assistant Professor, Department of Music, Harvard University, Massachusetts

Berlin Prize Fellow - Class of Spring 2000

Karen Painter is on the faculty at the University of Minnesota, as an associate professor in the School of Music and a faculty associate in Jewish Studies and at the Center for European Studies. She writes on the history of musical listening, especially in the context of German ideology and social history. The framework for her research has involved early bourgeois musical culture, fin-de-siècle cultural debates, World War I, Austro-German socialism, and Nazism, addressing reactions to Mahler and Mozart, but also Wagner, Bruckner, Mahler, Schoenberg, Richard Strauss, Hindemith and Orff.


Painter holds a BA in music and philosophy (Yale University, 1987) and PhD in music (Columbia University, 1996). Her previous faculty appointments were at Dartmouth College (1995-1997) and Harvard University (1997-2007), and she was Director of the Office of Research and Analysis for the National Endowment for the Arts in 2005-2006. She served as Maître de conférences invitée, at the École des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales, Paris, in 2010. Author of Symphonic Aspirations: German Music and Politics, 1900-1945, Painter has also edited Late Thoughts: Reflections on Artists and Composers at Work (with Thomas Crow) and Mahler and His World.


In 1999-2000 she was recipient of Humboldt fellowship as well as the Berlin Prize of the American Academy.

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