Alexander Rehding

Alexander Rehding

Fanny Peabody Professor of Music, Department of Music

Alexander Rehding is Fanny Peabody Professor of Music at Harvard University. He obtained a Ph.D. from Cambridge University in 1998 and went on to postdoctoral fellowships at Cambridge, the University of Pennsylvania, and Princeton, before joining Harvard’s Music Department at Harvard in 2003. Anchored in German and European cultural and intellectual history of the 18th-21st centuries, Rehding's research and teaching interests include such topics as music and identity, cultural transfer, historiography, ecocriticism, sound studies, media theory, and digital humanities. Rehding has served as editor for Acta musicologica (2006–11) and editor-in-chief of the Oxford Handbooks Online series in Music (2011–19); he is series editor of the six-volume Cultural History of Western Music by Bloomsbury. His contributions have been recognized with such awards as a Guggenheim Fellowship and the Dent Medal of the International Musicological Society and the Royal Musical Association. His interest in integrating digital technology into teaching and research led him to found Harvard’s Sound Lab in 2012. His forthcoming monograph examines the Voyager Golden Record—a collection of world music—that NASA shot into outer space in 1977, and he is currently working on two monographs, one on the role of instruments in the shaping of musical thought, and one on music and the Anthropocene.


Selected Publications

Hugo Riemann and the Birth of Modern Musical Thought (Cambridge 2003)

Music and Monumentality: Commemoration and Wonderment in 19th Century German Music (Oxford 2011)

Beethoven’s Symphony no. 9 (Oxford 2017)

Alien Listening, the Voyager Golden Record, and Music from Earth (Zone 2021)

Contact Information

Music Building 305N
p: (617) 496-6646

Faculty Role