Show/hide main menu

Postdoctoral Researchers

Dr Gavin Williams

Leverhulme Early Career Research Fellow

Tel: 020 7848 1431                                                                                             Address 
Department of Music, Room SWB28
King's College London
Strand Campus



Gavin is a musicologist currently working on a book project, Geographies of the Gramophone: Recorded Sound and Urban Space, which explores the activities of listeners, labourers, recording artists and sound engineers in the early-20th century. 

Before coming to KCL, Gavin wrote a PhD at Harvard (2013) on the Futurist soundscapes of Milan. Afterwards, he was a Junior Research Fellow at Jesus College, Cambridge, and a research associate with the ERC project “Music in London.” During this time Gavin pursued an interdisciplinary project on the sounds of the Crimean War, which has since become an edited book (provisionally) entitled Hearing Crimea: Sound in Nineteenth-Century Wartime.

Research Interests
  • Nineteenth-century and twentieth-century music
  • Sound studies
  • Film studies

I’d be more than happy to advise (or just chat with) students interested in the topics listed above. Please do get in touch!

Selected publications
  • “Engine Noise and Artificial Intelligence: Babbage’s London,” in Sound Knowledge: Music and Science in London, 1789-1851, eds. James Q. Davies and Ellen Lockhart (University of Chicago Press, 2016).
  • “Machine Speak: Ruggiero Leoncavallo, ‘Vesti la giubba’, I Pagliacci, Act 1,” Cambridge Opera Journal 28/2 (2016), 241-244
  • “A Voice of the Crowd: Futurism and the Politics of Noise,” 19th-Century Music 37/2 (2013), 113-129
  • “Orating Verdi: Death and the Media ca. 1901,” Cambridge Opera Journal 23/3 (2011), 119-143
  • Review Article. “Emilio Jona, Sergio Liberovici, Franco Castelli, and Alberto Lovatto: Le ciminiere non fanno più fumo: Canti e memorie degli operai torinesi (Rome: Donzelli, 2008),” Opera Quarterly 29/1 (2013), 80-85

At KCL, Gavin launched the undergraduate course “Sound Studies” and have team-taught an introduction to ethnomusicology, “Global Thinking, Global Listening.” He has also taught courses in the analysis of 18th- to 20th-century music, and supervised undergraduate dissertations on music and audiovisual culture, feminism and musical narration, among other things. On the graduate level, Gavin has also taught the core course for the Cambridge MPhil, “Musicology and Its Debates.”

Sitemap Site help Terms and conditions  Privacy policy  Accessibility  Modern slavery statement  Contact us

© 2018 King's College London | Strand | London WC2R 2LS | England | United Kingdom | Tel +44 (0)20 7836 5454