Spatial music

European Journal of Philosophy 30 (1):279-292 (2022)
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Abstract

Everyone agrees that musical works are individuated by essential elements such as tone, harmony, and rhythm. Some argue that timbre or instrumentation can individuate musical works, too. I argue here that there can be a further element of musical works: spatial location. Some works of music are partly constituted by the location and motion of their sound sources. I begin by describing works of spatial music and arguing that they exist. I then consider the implications for the ontology of music. Hardcore formalists cannot allow for spatial music. I argue that two other views, which allow a close relationship between sounds and musical works, can allow for works of spatial music. However, their ability to do so turns on issues in the philosophy of sound. I appeal to work in philosophy of sound to show that music is an art not just of hearing, but of sounds.

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John Dyck
Auburn University

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References found in this work

What a musical work is.Jerrold Levinson - 1980 - Journal of Philosophy 77 (1):5-28.
Consciousness and the World.Brian O'shaughnessy - 2000 - Philosophical Quarterly 51 (205):532-539.
Artworks as historical individuals.Guy Rohrbaugh - 2003 - European Journal of Philosophy 11 (2):177–205.
Works and Worlds of Art.Nicholas Wolterstorff - 1983 - Mind 92 (366):306-309.

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