Emma Dillon

Emma Dillon


  • Professor in Music, Music
  • Phone82686
  • 94

Personal profile

Biographical details

Emma Dillon is Professor of Music. She studied music at Oxford as an undergraduate (1989-1992), went on to completed a DPhil in 1998, and was also the recipient of a Junior Research Fellowship. She worked as a Lecturer in Music at the University of Bristol (1998-2000). In 2000 she moved to the United States and joined the Music Department at the University of Pennsylvania, where she worked until 2012 first as an Assistant Professor and later as a Full Professor, and where she also served as Chair of the Department. She has also been a Visiting Professor at the University of California at Berkeley, a Member and Visitor at the Institute for Advanced Studies (School of Historical Studies) in Princeton, and a Visiting Scholar at Corpus Christi College, Oxford. She joined the Music Department at King’s in 2013, and is also an active member of the Centre for Late Antique and Medieval Studies.

Research interests (short)

  • Medieval music and culture, 1100-1400
  • History of sound; sound studies
  • History of material texts

Emma Dillon’s research focuses on European musical culture from the twelfth to fourteenth centuries. Her work ranges widely in terms of repertories, sources, and methodological approach, and broadly speaking falls at the intersection of musicology, sound studies, medieval studies, and the history of material texts. She is the author of Medieval Music-Making and the Roman de Fauvel (Cambridge University Press, 2002) and The Sense of Sound: Musical Meaning in France, 1260-1330 (Oxford University Press in 2012). In 2002 she won the Jerome Roche Prize, awarded by the Royal Musical Assocation. 

She is the recipient of a Leverhulme Trust Major Research Fellowship from 2016-2019 for a project entitled 'The Romance of Song', which explores the emergence of trouvère song in 12th-century France in the era before the chansonnier;  and a British Academy Small Grant (2016-17) for the related project 'Things that Sing', which explores the intersections of sound, music and objects in courtly culture c.1160-1350. These projects also fostera creative application for her research in the museum environment, and include collaboration with scholars, curators and practitioners.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions

Education/Academic qualification

Music, Doctor of Philosophy

Award Date: 10 Oct 1998

Music, Bachelor of Arts, University of Oxford

Award Date: 1 Sept 1992


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