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Kristin Franseen

Kristin M. Franseen (PhD Musicology, McGill) is a 2021-2023 FRQSC postdoctoral fellow. Her research centers on the place of identity, gossip, and fiction in the histories of musicology, music theory, and music biography.

Her current project “Memories of a Musicologist: Listening, Musical Nostalgia, and Sexuality in Edward Prime-Stevenson’s Repertory” considers the late work of the eccentric US music critic and amateur sexologist Edward Prime-Stevenson (1858-1942). While better known today for his contributions to early gay literary history through the novel Imre: A Memorandum (ca. 1905) and The Intersexes: A History of Simisexualism as a Problem in Social Life (ca. 1908/9), Prime-Stevenson’s last two known books on musical subjects (Long-Haired Iopas: Old Chapters from Twenty-Five Years of Music Criticism (1927) and A Repertory of One Hundred Musical Programmes (1932)) reflect an attempt to bring together his early career as a music journalist with a lifetime of personal nostalgia, research and gossip about the history of sexuality, and changing approaches to listening to opera and symphonic music. This project revaluates Prime-Stevenson’s place in the history of queer musicology and music theory, with a particular focus on reconstructing his research process and intended (and, in some cases, imagined) readership.

Kristin has previously taught courses in music history and appreciation, research methods, and music and gender at McGill University, the University of Ottawa, and Carleton University. Her secondary research interests include depictions of female philosophers in 18th-century opera, early metronome advertising, and the intersections of literature and biography in Antonio Salieri’s reception history. She is also a research associate at the Simone de Beauvoir Institute.


Imagining Musical Pasts: The Queer Literary Musicology of Vernon Lee, Rosa Newmarch, and Edward Prime-Stevenson. Under contract with Clemson University Press. In process.


2022 - “‘Everything You’ve Heard is True’: Resonating Musicological Anecdotes in Crime Fiction about Antonio Salieri.” Journal of Historical Fictions. Special issue on The Sound of the Past. 4, no. 1: 41-60.

2020 - “Queering Musical Biography in the Writings of Edward Prime-Stevenson and Rosa Newmarch.” 19th-Century Music. Special issue on Biography and Life-Writing. 44, no. 2: 100–118.

2020 - “‘Onward to the End of the Nineteenth Century’: Edward Prime-Stevenson’s Queer Musicological Nostalgia.” Music and Letters 100, no. 2: 300–320.

2019 - “Women’s Musical Agency and Experiences in Vernon Lee’s Music and its Lovers.” Cahiers de la Société québécoise de recherche en musique 18, no. 1: 23–29.

2014 - “Mälzel and Mechanical Music in Beethoven’s Vienna.” Keyboard Perspectives 7:  1–20.

Chapters in Edited Collections

2021 - “The Character of the Suffragette and Women’s Listening in Vernon Lee’s Music and its Lovers.” Christopher Wiley and Lucy Ella Rose (eds.). Suffrage in Word, Image, Music, and Drama: The Making of a Movement. Routledge Interdisciplinary Research in Gender. 205-223.

Public Scholarship

2022 - “The Salieri Rumor and Why Gossip Matters.” Contingent Magazine. 

2020 - “‘The Old Queer Musicology’: Strategies from the Early Twentieth Century.” Blog post for Bent Notes (blog and podcast of the LGBTQ+ Study Groups of the Royal Musical Association, the British Forum for Ethnomusicology, and the Society for Musicology in Ireland).

2016 - “The Secret Life of Rosa Newmarch: Innuendo and Musical Biography, ca. 1900–1915.” Magazine article for Musique et pédagogie 30, no. 3: 18–20. 

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