Commission Music

Commission Music
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Tuesday, 17 February 2004

acadmic writing

"New paradigms of the responding self, capable of exemplifying the dialogic relation that structures the meaning space deliminated by the biblical canon, spring up along this trajectory of interpretation." (Riccoeur, "The Summoned Subject in the School of the Narratives of the Prophetic Vocation." In Figuring the Scared: Religion, Narration and Imagination. p 267)

The debate:

Is academic writing bullshit or horseshit?

While heretofore the traditional cry of the beleagured student, representing an esprit de corps as much as a remonstrance against obfuscated elusitivty, has been to invoke bovine post-gustatory effluent, it is encumbent upon scholars to examine the lexical baggage surrounding this phraseology and unpack possible biases. For instance, exegesis of the prefix unearths an allusivity to masculinormative beastomorphism, clearly substantiating latent gender issues in the academy, a constituent of occidental scholastic heritage. This, conforming to the mysogonist preposition that congizance is a masculine endeavor. Contrast this now to the symbolic grid envoked via refrences to enquine imagery. The social gendered meaning space deliminated the academic tradition remains undiscerned, masking a recalcitrant responce to gynoschoalistisim or evoking the semiotics of tolerance? Given the subjectivity of differentiating the two prepositions and to avoid "looking a gift horse in the mouth," the communal recitation is quasi-mandated to equimorphise. That is, academic writing is horseshit.

what about academic music?

ah yes. What about academic music? My music is heavily academically influenced. this is my second round of music school. i read acadademic books about music. i talk to professors. i create stuff that is respected in academic settings (more or less), but doesn't have much of an outside audience. Just like the essays of the guy I quote at the top of this post. Academics like him. they know the lineage of his teachers and can recognize his influences. The read him and think about him and incorporate his ideas into their own writings. just like music.

well, ok, so is my music horseshit? Some people like it (mostly academics and other composers). But some people also like academic writing (mostly academics). So horseshit is in the eye of the beholder, I guess. Or, maybe pretension is always horshit?

Morton feldman just wrote things as he wanted to. He didn't have a system. He wrote notes down on paper and people played them. No manifestos. No pronouncements on "invoking temoporal space." Just notes on paper.

I think music is nifty, but it's not like finding a cure for cancer or something. It's entertainment. People ultimately listen or don't listen based on how they like the sounds, not because of over-intellectulazised program notes. music is nifty. "nifty." not "secular quasi spiritual pathos."

Learning things

Last semester, I learned to tie my shoelaces so that they don't come untied. This semester, I think I'll learn about how to do bow markings, so string players can figure out how to play notes I write. Maybe next semester, I'll learn some social skills. I need to concentrate on the usefulness of bowmarkings, or i'll never do my reading again.

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