Polmic - FB

musicologists (B)


Ludwik Bielawski,
ethnomusicologist, music theoretician; b. 27th July 1929 in Chojnice. He first attended a Polish primary school (1936-44) and then a German-run one in Bursy. In 1944-45 he was a prisoner of the Nazi concentration camp in Potulice. After the war ended, he completed a secondary school in Chojnice, took private piano lessons, and was a church organist. Between 1950 and 1954 he studied musicology at Poznań University under A Chybiński, M. Szczepańska, H. Feicht, and M. Sobieski. He took part in the music folklore fieldwork project implemented on a national scale in 1950-54. After graduation, he moved to Warsaw to work with the State Institute of Art which was renamed as the Institute of Art of the Polish Academy of Sciences (PAN) in 1957. In 1965 Ludwik Bielawski obtained a PhD degree, having written a thesis on the rhythmics of Polish folk songs (published in Kraków in 1970) under J. M. Chomiński. In 1974 he obtained a habilitation for a thesis on zonal theory of time and its significance for musical anthropology (Kraków, 1976). In 1987 he was appointed an associate professor, and in 1997 – a full professor. He has been leading the Folklore Lab at PAN Institute of Art, as well as the Department of Music History since 1992. Since 1975 he has been teaching ethnomusicology at the Fryderyk Chopin University of Music in Warsaw, where he led the Department of Music Theory in 1987-92. In 1981 he joined the Committee on Art Studies of the Polish Academy of Sciences, while in 1985-91 he was a member of the board of UNESCO's Council for Traditional Music. Currently, he is a member of the Central Commission for Academic Degrees and Titles (Poland) and scientific boards of PAN Institute of Art, Institute of Musicology of the University of Warsaw, and the musicologists' section of the Polish Composers' Union.
Ludwik Bielawski's research is devoted to Polish and European music traditions, music theory, research methodology, and the concept of time and space in music and culture. He is also focusing on administrative work at the PAN Institute of Art, where he has been dealing with the procedure of awarding doctoral degrees and habilitations. He also supervises the publication of Polish folk music source materials as part of a series titled "Polska pieśń i muzyka ludowa – źródła i materiały” (as yet the volumes devoted to the regions of Kujawy, Kaszuby, Warmia and Mazury have been released). He has co-edited more than a dozen of musicological volumes, and prepared A. Chybiński's and J. and M. Sobieski's ethnomusicological writings for publication. He has taken part in a range of academic conferences in Poland and abroad. He has received the Golden Medal of Merit (1975), Knight's Cross of the Order of Polonia Restituta (1999), Kolberg Award (1999), and Award of the Polish Composers' Union (2001).

updated: November 2014 (ab)



The human perspective of time: At the foundations of music in: Polish Art Studies II, ed. S. Mossakowski, Wrocław 1980, s. 133-144
The zones of time in music and human activity in: The Study of Time, ed. J. T. Fraser, N. Lawrence, D. Park, New York - Heidelberg - Berlin, 1981 nr 4, s. 173-179

Ethnomusicology in the Turn in: A. Czekanowska "Pathways of Ethnomusicology" ed. L. Bielawski, P. Dahlig, S. Żerańska-Kominek, Warszawa 1999, s. 15-23
History in ethnomusicology, "Yearbook of Traditional Music", 1985 nr 17, s. 8-14

A. Czekanowska "Pathways of Ethnomusicology" ed. L. Bielawski, P. Dahlig, S. Żerańska-Kominek, Instytut Muzykologii UW, Warszawa 1999