As moral philosopher Zhu Xi sought to nurture the autonomous moral self. In his pedagogical scheme, one ought to cultivate the innate goodness of the heart, investigate principles in things, and embody ethical standards in daily life. In Zhu Xi’s view, the ability to exercise moral autonomy is obtained through a long period of moral and ethical training under the close surveillance of one’s immediate surroundings since early childhood. For this reason, Zhu Xi emphasized the practice of social norms as (...) well as the performance of mundane rituals as the preconditions for the development of the autonomous moral self. By combining the Lesser Learning with the Great Learning, Zhu Xi articulated an integrated vision of moral development from the heteronomous performing of ethical duties to the autonomous embodiment of moral principles. (shrink)
would probably have taken over the translating profession by now. At best, computer translations read awkwardly, and some of them are downright humorous. Precise, word-for-word, humanrendered translations fare no better.
This essay critically analyzes a common metaphor in political theory, which figures the growth of power as a process of “spreading” or “diffusion.” It argues that narratives that cast the generalization of power as a movement of “spreading” often fail to furnish the specific type of historical evidence that they imply, such that these narratives are frequently received as richly suggestive yet ultimately unjustified. This essay develops an alternative way of conceptualizing the generalization of power, one that rests on rigorous (...) yet speculative evidence of the sort that political theorists are best positioned to find: not proof of literal extension or application of existing powers to new domains, but accidental convergences, isomorphisms, and ideal combinations among disparate practices that introduce large powers into the world. To do this, the essay revisits Foucault’s narrative of the generalization of disciplinary power in modern Western societies, which is perhaps the clearest source for the familiarity of the figure of “spread” in contemporary political theory. It shows that Foucault’s incessant use of the “spread” metaphor naturally invites the dismissive reading that Discipline and Punish received in many quarters, for it implies a historical process that Foucault cannot justify. Yet I argue that in a brief self-criticism, Foucault provides the rudiments for a conception of power’s generalization far more useful and compelling than the metaphoric of “spread.” I suggest that this alternative, if developed, is not just the proper frame for interpreting Foucault’s narrative, but a promising practical resource for contemporary theorists of general powers. (shrink)
This paper traces the emergence of a new figure of the desiring subject in contemporary addiction science and in three other recent cultural developments: the rise of cognitive-behavior therapy, the self-tracking movement, and the dissemination of ratings. In each, the subject’s desire becomes newly figured as a response to objects rather than a manifestation of the soul, measured numerically rather than expressed in language and rendered impersonal rather than individualizing. Together, these developments suggest a shift in the dominant form of (...) the desiring subject in contemporary U.S. culture, one that breaks with the subject-form that Foucault theorized five decades ago. (shrink)
Discusses songs by the troubadours, trouvères, and Guillaume de Machaut, performed live and on the page, in the context of antique, late antique, and medieval thought and poetic practice and in the light of later opera. Topics include cosmology, education, astronomy, breath, beasts, monsters, hybridity, imagination, life, and death.
The last twenty years or so have seen a surge of interest in the philosophy of music. However there is comparatively little philosophical literature devoted specifically to songs, singing and vocal music in general. This new collection of essays on the philosophical aspects of song and singing includes articles on the relationship between words and music in songs, the ontology of songs and recordings, meaning in songs, the metaphysics of vocal music in opera and the movies, and the ethical (...) challenges raised in song performance. The essays discuss a large range of examples, including rock, lieder, jazz songs, blues, doo wop, and rap. New essays by leading philosophers of art, including Peter Kivy (on "realistic song" in film), Jerrold Levinson (on jazz singing), Lee B. Brown (on the "minstrel hypothesis" in popular music), and Ted Gracyk (on linguistic pragmatics and song meaning). Papers that offer ground-breaking theories of the appreciation of rock recordings, the ethical implications of popular songs, the ontology of ephemeral artworks, the ontological status of cover versions, and of how a genre of popular music can both express and be a function of its social context papers that challenge existing accounts of much-debated topics, including operatic metaphysics and of the ontology of recorded music. Interdisciplinary essays that cut across aesthetics, philosophy of music, cultural music studies and musicology. Essays that are clearly written and engaging. (shrink)
An overview of Confucianism in the Song, Yuan, and Ming dynasties, which many regard as second only to the classical period in philosophical importance and influence. This piece canvasses the major thinkers and schools, competing views on the metaphysics of li (pattern, principle) and qi (vital stuff), criticisms of Buddhism and Daoism, and debates about the heartmind, virtue, knowledge, and governance.
A number of attempts have been made to construct a plausible ontology of rock music. Each of these ontologies identifies a single type of ontological entity as the “work” in rock music. Yet, all the suggestions advanced to date fail to capture some important considerations about how we engage with music of this tradition. This prompted Lee Brown to advocate a healthy skepticism of higher-order musical ontologies. I argue here that we should instead embrace a pluralist ontology of rock, an (...) ontology that recognizes more than one kind of entity as “the work” in rock music. I contend that this approach has a number of advantages over other ontologies of rock, including that of allowing us to make some comparisons across ontological kinds. (shrink)
Erôs, Song and Philosophy in Plato suggests alternative paths of understanding the true Philosophical Muse in Plato’s works. Through the discussion of certain Platonic dialogues, it interweaves erôs, mousikê, and philosophy to unravel new insights into Plato’s philosophical thought and tension of rejecting and accepting the established culture.
Adapted by Guy Wyndham-JonesLike A Casting of Light, this little book presents a number of passages from Proclus arranged in verse form: the effect is both striking and inspiring. The voice is our native instrument of music, whether the vocal or the written word; both, when genuine, are the song of soul, and together they voice the soul's music. The numerous offerings in this little book will present you with a flavour of both the nature and scope of the (...) beautiful vision of Proclus, the extraordinary lover of wisdom; and they will illustrate the music of philosophy, to be found within the prose of the philosophers of the Platonic tradition. Together they represent the Song of Proclus; and each piece is a meditation in itself. (shrink)
Few words in both everyday parlance and theoretical discourse have been as rhapsodically defended or as fervently resisted as "experience." Yet, to date, there have been no comprehensive studies of how the concept of experience has evolved over time and why so many thinkers in so many different traditions have been compelled to understand it. _Songs of Experience _is a remarkable history of Western ideas about the nature of human experience written by one of our best-known intellectual historians. With its (...) sweeping historical reach and lucid comparative analysis—qualities that have made Martin Jay's previous books so distinctive and so successful—_Songs of Experience _explores Western discourse from the sixteenth century to the present, asking why the concept of experience has been such a magnet for controversy. Resisting any single overarching narrative, Jay discovers themes and patterns that transcend individuals and particular schools of thought and illuminate the entire spectrum of intellectual history. As he explores the manifold contexts for understanding experience—epistemological, religious, aesthetic, political, and historical—Jay engages an exceptionally broad range of European and American traditions and thinkers from the American pragmatists and British Marxist humanists to the Frankfurt School and the French poststructuralists, and he delves into the thought of individual philosophers as well, including Montaigne, Bacon, Locke, Hume and Kant, Oakeshott, Collingwood, and Ankersmit. Provocative, engaging, erudite, this key work will be an essential source for anyone who joins the ongoing debate about the material, linguistic, cultural, and theoretical meaning of "experience" in modern cultures. (shrink)
"Through the close analysis of musical performance and tradition, the scholarly contributiors to Island Songs provide a global review of how island songs, their lyrics, and their singers engage with the challenges of modernity, migration , ...
The article addresses the issue of using English songs to assist students of non-language departments master basic linguistic skills and communicative abilities. The authors offer a systematic and flexible approach to dealing with educational songs, demonstrate advantages of implementing numerous tasks to be varied and adapted to the needs of particular target audiences. The considered approach is intended to raise students’ motivation in learning foreign language.
Markosian presents an argument against certain theories of time based on the aesthetic value of music. He argues that turning a piece of music sideways in time destroys its intrinsic value, which would not be possible if the Spacetime Thesis were true. In this paper I show that sideways music poses no problems for any theory of time by demonstrating that turning a piece of music sideways does not affect its intrinsic value. I do this by appealing to spatial analogies (...) that highlight the similarities between spatial and temporal rotations. (shrink)
This latest philosophical text by John Sallis is inspired by the work of contemporary Chinese painter Cao Jun. It carries out a series of philosophical reflections on nature, art, and music by taking up Cao Jun's art and thought, with a focus on questions of the elemental. Sallis's reflections are not a matter of simply relating art works to philosophical thought, as theoretical insights and developments run throughout Cao Jun's writings and inform many of his artistic works. Sallis maintains abundant (...) points of contact with Chinese philosophical traditions but also with Western philosophy. In these reflections on art, Sallis poses a critique of mimesis and considers the relation of painting to music. He affirms his conviction that the artist must always turn to nature, especially as reflections on the earth and sky delimit the scale and place of what is human. Full-color illustrations enhance this provocative and penetrating text. (shrink)
A number of philosophers of music have proved resistant to the idea that song should be considered as a hybrid art that combines language and music. Separately, Levinson in his influential account of hybrid art forms does not admit folk song, even though he does allow nineteenth-century lieder into the hybrid category. Folk songs are sometimes treated as if they are anterior to and therefore ontologically distinct from the more complex songs of Western art music, or even of (...) modern popular culture. In contrast, this article argues that in a historical perspective English-language folk songs constitute a category of considerable complexity, and that the combination of the two distinct media of language and music is fundamental to any consideration of such songs in an ontological perspective. (shrink)
The Bird Song Diamond project is a series of multifaceted and multidisciplinary installations with the aim of bringing contemporary research on bird communication to a large public audience. Using art and technology to create immersive experiences, BSD allows large audiences to embody bird communication rather than passively observe. In particular, BSD Mimic, a system for mimicking bird song, asks participants to grapple with both audition and vocalization of birdsong. The use of interactive installations for public outreach provides unique (...) experiences to a diverse audience, while providing direct feedback for artists and researchers interested in the success of such outreach. By following an iterative design process, both artists and researchers have been able to evaluate the effectiveness of each installation for promoting audience engagement with the subject matter. The execution and evaluation of each iteration of BSD is described throughout the paper. In addition, the process of interdisciplinary collaboration in our project has led to a more defined role of the artist as a facilitator of specialists. BSD Mimic has also led to further questions about the nature of audience collaboration for an engaged experience. (shrink)
Dario Martinelli examines the nature of songs of social protest (SSPs) in Give Peace a Chant: Popular Music, Politics and Social Protest and provides readers with a book that is engaging, provoking, and enjoyable. Martinelli’s research is thorough, astute, and structured in a way that is both rigorous and accessible. Combining typology with several case studies, Martinelli achieves his stated goal of showing how context, song lyrics, and the music itself are organic and equally important elements that constitute SSPs.
Justice, Gender and the Politics of Multiculturalism explores the tensions that arise when culturally diverse democratic states pursue both justice for religious and cultural minorities and justice for women. Sarah Song provides a distinctive argument about the circumstances under which egalitarian justice requires special accommodations for cultural minorities while emphasizing the value of gender equality as an important limit on cultural accommodation. Drawing on detailed case studies of gendered cultural conflicts, including conflicts over the 'cultural defense' in criminal law, (...) aboriginal membership rules and polygamy, Song offers a fresh perspective on multicultural politics by examining the role of intercultural interactions in shaping such conflicts. In particular, she demonstrates the different ways that majority institutions have reinforced gender inequality in minority communities and, in light of this, argues in favour of resolving gendered cultural dilemmas through intercultural democratic dialogue. (shrink)
No single theory so far proposed gives a wholly satisfactory account of the origin and maintenance of bird-song dialects. This failure is the consequence of a weak comparative literature that precludes careful comparisons among species or studies, and of the complexity of the issues involved. Complexity arises because dialects seem to bear upon a wide range of features in the life history of bird species. We give an account of the principal issues in bird-song dialects: evolution of vocal (...) learning, experimental findings on song ontogeny, dialect descriptions, female and male reactions to differences in dialect, and population genetics and dispersal.We present a synthetic theory of the origin and maintenance of song dialects, one that accommodates most of the different systems reported in the literature. The few data available suggest that large, regional dialect populations are genetically differentiated; this pattern is correlated with reduced dispersal between dialects, assortative mating by females, and male-male exclusion. At the same time, “subdialects” may be formed within regional dialects. Subdialect clusters are usually small and may represent vocal mimicry among a few adjacent territorial males. The relative importance of genetic and social adaptation may contribute to the emergence of subdialects; their distinctiveness may be correlated with the degree of polygyny, for example. Thus, subdialect formation is linked to one theory of the evolution of repertoire size, but data are too fragmentary to examine this idea critically. (shrink)
Distinguished ethnomusicologist Philip V. Bohlman compiles Johann Gottfried Herder’s writings on music and nationalism, from his early volumes of _Volkslieder_ through sacred song to the essays on aesthetics late in his life, shaping them as the book on music that Herder would have written had he gathered the many strands of his musical thought into a single publication. Framed by analytical chapters and extensive introductions to each translation, this book interprets Herder’s musings on music to think through several major (...) questions: What meaning did religion and religious thought have for Herder? Why do the nation and nationalism acquire musical dimensions at the confluence of aesthetics and religious thought? How did his aesthetic and musical thought come to transform the way Herder understood music and nationalism and their presence in global history? Bohlman uses the mode of translation to explore Herder’s own interpretive practice as a translator of languages and cultures, providing today’s readers with an elegantly narrated and exceptionally curated collection of essays on music by two major intellectuals. (shrink)