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MUSIQUE et RAPPORTS SOCIAUX

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MUSIQUE et RAPPORTS SOCIAUX Empty MUSIQUE et RAPPORTS SOCIAUX

Message par Florage le Lun 27 Juil - 11:00

c'est la réception via tweeter Music, Sound and Conflict @music_conflict qui me donne l'idée d'ouvrir ce sujet, ici donc le thème Son, musique et violence dont ce compte tweeter donne ce chapeau : « Que nous apprend l'étude du son et de la musique sur la violence et la guerre ? Que nous disent la guerre et la violence collective sur l’importance des pratiques musicales et de l’écoute pour les êtres humains ? »

quel rapport avec mon projet LA VIE ENVERS ? Il y a de la violence dans ma peinture, dans ma poésie et dans ma musique, en rapports avec les événements tels que guerre et conflits sociaux, ce dont parle ce texte, mais davantage relativement aux bruits et musiques qu'ils produisent. En arts, la violence s'exprime par la forme, comme tout ce qui y fait sens, portant un contenu. cette violence formelle est nécessairement en relation avec quelque chose que veut exprimer l'artiste, une violence qu'il a ressentie ou vécue, qu'elle soit individuelle ou collective, psychologique ou physique
Son, musique et violence
Sound, Music and Violence
Introduction
Luis Velasco-Pufleau, musiques et sciences sociales, hors-série 2, 2020
Résumé
L’écoute peut devenir un outil d’exploration, d’engagement et de connaissance sensible du monde. La musique peut être un moyen de projeter, d’encadrer et de préparer l’affrontement avec l’ennemi. De quelle façon l’étude du son et de la musique peut-elle aider à comprendre la violence collective et la guerre ? Comment l’étude de la guerre et de la violence collective peut-elle aider à comprendre l’importance des pratiques musicales et de l’écoute pour les êtres humains ? Ce numéro hors-série de Transposition propose d’explorer ces questions à partir de l’analyse des liens entre son, musique et violence.
Plan
- Expériences d’écoute de la violence armée
- À l’écoute des vestiges sonores de la violence
- Violence et agentivité du son et de la musique
1
Lorsqu’au troisième chant de la première partie de la Divine Comédie, Virgile fait franchir à Dante la porte de l’Enfer, ce dernier est effrayé non pas par ce qu’il voit, mais par ce qu’il entend. « Pleurs, soupirs et hautes plaintes résonnaient dans l’air sans étoiles »1. L’horreur est telle que Dante commence à pleurer. Les lamentations des suppliciés dans « diverses langues » et « horribles jargons », les « mots de douleur » et « accents de rage », font un fracas tournoyant et assourdissant. Face à l’incompréhension de ces sons d’effroi et de douleur, Dante demande à Virgile : « Maître, qu’est-ce que j’entends ? »2 Il ressent la douleur portée par les sons mais il ne sait pas qui les produit, ni pour quelle raison : il n’avait jamais entendu de pareils sons. Pour pouvoir attacher un sens global à ce nouveau monde sonore, il doit désormais écouter attentivement ; car l’écoute sera essentielle pour explorer l’espace, pour comprendre les situations et pour donner sens à sa progression dans les différents cercles de l’enfer. Ceci jusqu’aux derniers vers, quand Dante et son guide trouvent la sortie du bas monde grâce à l’écoute : ils reconnaissent le chemin caché par où ils vont sortir « non par la vue mais par le son d’un petit ruisseau »3 qui creuse la roche. L’empruntant, ils reviennent au monde clair et peuvent enfin « revoir les étoiles »4.

2
Le récit que fait Dante de sa traversée de l’Enfer pointe la complexité émotionnelle des phénomènes sonores et montre comment l’écoute peut devenir un outil d’exploration, d’engagement et de connaissance sensible du monde. Ce numéro hors-série de Transposition propose d’explorer ces sujets à partir de l’analyse des liens entre son, musique et violence. Il entend ainsi contribuer, six ans après le numéro 4 consacré à « Musique et conflits armés après 1945 »5, à l’essor considérable des recherches interdisciplinaires qui se donnent pour objectif la compréhension de la violence collective et de la guerre à partir du son et de la musique. En effet, dans les champs de la musicologie, de l’ethnomusicologie, de l’histoire, de l’anthropologie ou encore des sound studies, de nombreux travaux se sont intéressés aussi bien aux répertoires mobilisés en temps de guerre qu’aux expériences d’écoute de combattant.e.s et de civil.e.s en contexte de conflit ou post-conflit. Les travaux pionniers de Svanibor Pettan sur les guerres des Balkans6 ont été suivis par des travaux sur les liens entre musique et violence7, des recherches sur les pratiques sonores et musicales des soldats durant ou après l’invasion des États-Unis en Irak8, de même que par un intérêt renouvelé pour les deux guerres mondiales9 et les conflits armés des xixe et xxe siècles10. Ces travaux constituent différentes entrées dans une « acoustémologie de la violence »11. Dans tous les cas, les sujets et les méthodes sont aussi divers que le nombre des chercheur.e.s impliqué.e.s.

3
Ce vaste projet scientifique est avant tout collectif et se place sous le signe du dialogue entre chercheur.e.s basé.e.s dans différents pays qui mobilisent des concepts et des méthodologies appartenant à plusieurs disciplines des sciences humaines et sociales. Ce numéro de Transposition paraît dans le contexte d’un mouvement social de grande ampleur, qui témoigne de nombreuses inquiétudes à l’égard des réformes néolibérales dans l’enseignement supérieur et la recherche en France. Pour parer au culte de la performance, au mythe de la réussite individuelle et aux injonctions à la compétition, il est important d’insister sur la dimension collective de la production des connaissances. Nous marchons sur des chemins qui ont été frayés par d’autres avant nous. Nos idées, aussi originales qu’elles puissent paraître, font toujours partie de constellations plus vastes et sont redevables de l’héritage de personnes qui nous ont précédées et avec qui nous les avons développées. Comme le soulignait récemment le sociologue Gary Younge dans The Guardian, « seuls les privilégiés et les naïfs croient que les réalisations des gens sont purement le produit de leur propre génie »12.

4
Ce numéro est collectif à plusieurs égards. Les trois articles du dossier thématique sont issus des journées d’étude Sound and Music in War from the Middle Ages to the Present, que j’ai eu l’opportunité d’organiser avec Marion Uhlig et Martin Rohde à l’Institut d’études médiévales de l’Université de Fribourg les 12 et 13 novembre 2018.13 La deuxième partie du numéro est composée d’un entretien et de trois commentaires critiques qui répondent et prolongent les propos énoncés. Enfin, la troisième partie est constituée de huit essais qui commentent certains textes du numéro ou développent des questions théoriques, éthiques et méthodologiques soulevées par la recherche sur la musique, le son et la guerre. Ces textes répondent à deux questionnements : de quelle façon l’étude du son et de la musique peut-elle aider à comprendre la violence collective et la guerre ? Comment l’étude de la guerre et de la violence collective peut-elle aider à comprendre l’importance des pratiques musicales et de l’écoute pour les êtres humains ?14

5
Toutefois, associer la musique à la violence, à la destruction et aux atrocités de la guerre ne va pas de soi dans la recherche en sciences humaines et sociales. Ainsi que le remarque l’ethnomusicologue Timothy Rice, les travaux dans le domaine de ce qu’il appelle « ethnomusicology in times (and places) of trouble » sont rares avant le début des années 200015. Cela s’expliquerait selon lui, entre autres choses, par des imaginaires culturels dans lesquels la musique est forcément associée à des choses « bonnes » et par des présupposés scientifiques selon lesquels la musique ne peut être produite que dans des contextes socialement stables16. Les textes de ce numéro contribuent à la reconfiguration de ces croyances et, comme Morag J. Grant le suggère dans son essai, à l’exploration des fondements culturels de la guerre et de la violence collective.

Expériences d’écoute de la violence armée
6
Le récit sonore de L’Enfer de Dante évoqué au début de cette introduction nous rappelle que le son peut constituer un événement qui modifie de façon durable la perception qu’un auditeur peut avoir du monde qui l’entoure. Les pleurs et les plaintes qui résonnent dans l’air sombre de l’Enfer terrifient Dante tout en lui faisant comprendre qu’il entre dans un lieu inconnu. Cependant, le son peut aussi être un processus qui se prolonge dans le temps et qui, par les interactions sensorielles avec la personne qui écoute, transforme sa perception du réel.

7
Dante apprend à écouter et à évoluer dans ce nouveau monde sonore et, par ce biais, développe de nouvelles connaissances sur son fonctionnement et les relations de pouvoir qui sont en jeu. La violence et la guerre déplacent les limites et les seuils des paysages sonores habituels, transformant durablement les repères et les capacités acoustiques des auditeurs/trices17. Le développement de ces habitudes et aptitudes d’écoute constitue un nouveau « régime d’audition » : l’ensemble de techniques, de technologies, de régulations, de savoirs partagés qui donnent forme aux pratiques d’écoute d’une communauté donnée18.

8
Est-il possible d’essayer de comprendre l’expérience de la guerre à travers les régimes d’audition ? Des recherches récentes ont exploré cette question, notamment à partir des récits de combattant.e.s19. L’essai signé par Michael Guida dans ce numéro met en évidence une facette peu étudiée de ces récits : l’expérience sonore de la nature que font des soldats britanniques mobilisés sur le front de l’Ouest durant la Première Guerre mondiale. À travers l’analyse de sources diverses – journaux intimes, poèmes et lettres – Guida montre comment les soldats attachent une importance particulière aux chants d’oiseaux, qui encadrent leurs expériences d’écoute des tranchées20. Pour sa part, John Morgan O’Connell discute les idées développées par plusieurs auteur.e.s du numéro en les mettant en perspective avec ses propres recherches autour de la bataille de Gallipoli (1915-1916). Il explore les liens entre musique et mémoire, notamment lorsque la musique est utilisée pour remémorer et oublier, pour célébrer la victoire ou commémorer la défaite21.

9
L’analyse d’expériences d’écoute et de régimes d’audition a aussi permis d’étudier l’expérience de la violence armée de non-combattant.e.s22. Ce domaine de recherche est exploré par Nikita Hock dans son article sur les expériences d’écoute de Juifs de Varsovie et de Galicie Orientale dans des abris souterrains durant la Seconde Guerre mondiale. Hock réussit à étudier, à partir d’un vaste corpus de journaux intimes, les expériences des civils – notamment des femmes et des personnes âgées – qui ont enduré la violence et la persécution durant l’Holocauste23.

À l’écoute des vestiges sonores de la violence
10
La question de l’accès aux sources et de leur analyse est centrale pour une acoustémologie de la violence. Comment interpréter les traces sonores de la guerre dans les sources écrites ? Ainsi que le souligne Annegret Fauser dans son essai, ces archives constituent des médiations d’expériences sonores du passé, des façons d’écouter et de mettre en récit. Prolongeant les travaux d’Ana María Ochoa Gautier, elle propose de suivre « une exploration accordée à l’acoustique [acoustically tuned] des archives écrites »24 afin d’explorer les vestiges sonores de la violence, tout en questionnant les archives en tant qu’entités historiquement construites et, de ce fait, privilégiant les voix de certains types de témoins25.

11
Parce que la violence « est toujours une attaque à l’endroit de la dignité, du sens de soi, et du futur d’une personne »26, elle bouleverse et opère une reconfiguration des frontières entre son, bruit et silence, entre ce qui est dicible et ce qui ne l’est pas. Ainsi que l’affirme Ana María Ochoa Gautier, « une des caractéristiques de la violence est la redéfinition de l’espace acoustique »27. Anna Papaeti explore les modalités et les enjeux pour la recherche en (ethno)musicologie de cette redéfinition dans le contexte de l’utilisation de la musique à des fins de torture. Elle réfléchit dans son essai aux conséquences du traumatisme infligé par le son et la musique dans des contextes de détention et à la dimension éthique inhérente à l’écoute du témoignage des victimes.28 Les modalités de ce que la voix peut exprimer, et les frontières entre son, bruit et silence, sont aussi quelques-unes des questions examinées par Sarah Kay dans son article sur les sirventes composés par Bertran de Born, l’un des plus célèbres troubadours de la seconde moitié du xiie siècle – qui figure d’ailleurs dans L’Enfer de Dante. Mobilisant le concept lacanien d’« extimité », Kay s’intéresse à la dimension sonore de ces chansons politiques d’amour et de guerre qui révèlent une médiation entre bruit et musique, et reconfigurent la transmission poétique des sujets de l’amour et de la mort29.

12
Pour sa part, Martin Daughtry appelle à rompre avec une vision anthropocentrée de l’activité musicale ; il en questionne les cadres pratiques et théoriques qui contribuent à alimenter l’un des moteurs de la violence moderne : la dichotomie entre nature et culture30. Avoir séparé des êtres qui devaient demeurer ensemble, voilà justement le reproche que Dante fait au troubadour Bertran de Born, lorsque son spectre apparaît au huitième cercle de l’enfer tenant « sa tête coupée par les cheveux, suspendue à la main comme une lanterne »31 : divisé lui-même pour avoir semé la discorde, sa peine est d’avancer avec son cerveau séparé de son corps. La réflexion sur les liens entre musique et violence donne à Daughtry l’opportunité de penser un dépassement de l’exceptionnalisme humain et d’appeler à une autre écoute des vestiges sonores de la violence humaine.

13
L’écoute de ces vestiges peut soulever des questionnements éthiques importants quand les chercheur.e.s sont amené.e.s à s’entretenir et à travailler avec des personnes qui ont participé activement aux atrocités de la guerre. Quoique fondamentale, cette question reste relativement peu abordée de façon explicite dans les recherches sur les liens entre son, musique et violence. Hettie Malcomson développe cet enjeu, affirmant la nécessité de respecter l’humanité et la subjectivité des personnes impliquées, et d’éviter tout sensationnalisme dans le processus de production des connaissances32.

Violence et agentivité du son et de la musique
14
L’ensemble des textes de ce numéro partagent une position scientifique qu’il est utile de rappeler : le son et la musique ne sont pas étudiés comme la cause de l’action violente, mais plutôt comme des ressources symboliques que les acteurs peuvent mobiliser dans des processus ou des dynamiques de violence. La différence est de taille et sous-entend le refus d’une ontologie du son et de la musique dans laquelle la volonté humaine serait subordonnée à leurs supposés pouvoirs. Il s’agit plutôt de comprendre de quelle façon les personnes se saisissent de la musique et des phénomènes sonores pour donner sens à leur réalité dans des contextes de guerre ou pour justifier des actes de destruction et de violence.

15
La musique peut être un moyen de projeter, d’encadrer et de préparer l’affrontement avec l’ennemi. L’imaginaire qu’elle véhicule tout comme ses caractéristiques sonores peuvent être mobilisés par les acteur.e.s afin de s’engager dans une confrontation réelle ou imaginaire. Cette hypothèse est explorée par Victor A. Stoichita dans son article sur les expériences d’écoute des soldats étatsuniens et du terroriste norvégien Anders Breivik. Il montre de quelle façon la possibilité que le son et la musique se trouvent à l’origine d’une chaîne causale – la capacité que l’auditeur/trice donne aux sons de « transformer » le monde dans lequel il ou elle habite – est étroitement liée à celle de l’ontologie de l’expérience d’écoute33. Cornelia Nuxoll explore d’autres enjeux de l’agentivité de la musique dans son essai sur son travail de terrain en Sierra Leone avec d’anciens combattants du Revolutionary United Front (RUF). Ses observations pointent la complexité émotionnelle liée à la musique utilisée dans des dynamiques de violence tout comme dans des processus de désarmement34.

16
L’entretien que j’ai réalisé avec Jean-Marc Rouillan, membre fondateur du groupe révolutionnaire armé Action directe (1977-1987), présente le point de vue d’un protagoniste d’une certaine violence politique. Il y raconte comment son engagement politique autour de 1968 a été précédé d’un engagement musical, dans l’attente d’un affrontement plus direct avec l’État. L’écoute de la musique rock et punk a servi de catalyseur pour fédérer des revendications de liberté et d’action politique autonome35. L’entretien est suivi de trois commentaires critiques de Matthew Worley (University of Reading)36, Timothy Scott Brown (Northeastern University)37 et Jeremy Varon (New School)38. Ces textes approfondissent, critiquent ou contextualisent des prises de position ou des faits exposés par Jean-Marc Rouillan. Qu’il s’agisse du rapport entre musique et mémoire de luttes politiques, de l’autonomie recherchée par le mouvement punk ou encore du lien entre rock et marchandisation, les commentaires apportent de précieux contrepoints pour saisir la complexité de la situation historique évoquée.

17
Comme le remarque Morag J. Grant, « bien après le cessez-le-feu, la musique continue de jouer un rôle souvent fondamental dans la célébration ou la commémoration de guerres et de guerriers, servant ainsi de boîte à outils pour la mémoire collective qui elle-même, bien trop souvent, est mobilisée au service des guerres à venir »39. Ainsi, en s’intéressant aux liens entre son, musique et violence, ce numéro de Transposition interroge les façons dont les sociétés humaines se pensent, construisent leur mémoire collective et se projettent dans le futur.

Bibliographie
Des DOI sont automatiquement ajoutés aux références par Bilbo, l'outil d'annotation bibliographique d'OpenEdition. Les utilisateurs des institutions qui sont abonnées à un des programmes freemium d'OpenEdition peuvent télécharger les références bibliographiques pour lequelles Bilbo a trouvé un DOI.
Alighieri Dante, La Divine Comédie : l’Enfer, Risset Jacqueline (trad.), Paris, GF Flammarion, 2004.
Audoin-Rouzeau Stéphane, Buch Esteban, Chimènes Myriam et Durosoir Georgie (dir.), La Grande Guerre des musiciens, Lyon, Symétrie, 2009.
Birdsall Carolyn, Nazi Soundscapes: Sound, Technology and Urban Space in Germany, 1933-1945, Amsterdam, Amsterdam University Press, 2012.
Brown Timothy Scott, « Going Underground: The Politics of Free Music around 1968 », Transposition, no Hors-série 2, 2020, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.4863. DOI : 10.4000/transposition.4863
Cusick Suzanne G., « “You are in a place that is out of the world. . .”: Music in the Detention Camps of the “Global War on Terror” », Journal of the Society for American Music, vol. 2, no 1, 2008, p. 1-26. DOI : 10.1017/S1752196308080012
Daughtry J. Martin, « Did Music Cause the End of the World? », Transposition, no Hors-série 2, 2020, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.5192. DOI : 10.4000/transposition.5192
Daughtry J. Martin, Listening to War: Sound, Music, Trauma, and Survival in Wartime Iraq, New York, Oxford University Press, 2015.
Evans Brad et Lennard Natasha, Violence: Humans in Dark Times, San Francisco, City Lights Books, 2018.
Fast Susan et Pegley Kip, Music, Politics, and Violence, Middletown, Wesleyan University Press, 2012.
Fauser Annegret, « Sound, Music, War, and Violence: Listening from the Archive », Transposition, no Hors-série 2, 2020, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.4310. DOI : 10.4000/transposition.4310
Fauser Annegret, Sounds of War: Music in the United States during World War II, New York, Oxford University Press, 2013.
Gilman Lisa, My Music, my War: The Listening Habits of U.S. Troops in Iraq and Afghanistan, Middletown, Wesleyan University Press, 2016.
Grant M. J. et Papaeti Anna (dir.), « Music and Torture | Music and Punishment », The World of Music, vol. 2, no 1, 2013, https://www.jstor.org/stable/i24316991.
Grant Morag Josephine, « On Music and War », Transposition, no Hors-série 2, 2020, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.4469. DOI : 10.4000/transposition.4469
Grant Morag Josephine, Möllemann Rebecca, Morlandstö Ingvill, Münz Simone Christine et Nuxoll Cornelia, « Music and Conflict: Interdisciplinary Perspectives », Interdisciplinary Science Reviews, vol. 35, no 2, 2010, p. 183-198.
Guida Michael, « Nature’s Sonic Order on the Western Front », Transposition, no Hors-série 2, 2020, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.4770. DOI : 10.4000/transposition.4770
Hartford Kassandra, « Listening to the Din of the First World War », Sound Studies, vol. 3, no 2, 2017, p. 98-114.
DOI : 10.1080/20551940.2017.1392227
Hock Nikita, « Making Home, Making Sense: Aural Experiences of Warsaw and East Galician Jews in Subterranean Shelters during the Holocaust », Transposition, no Hors-série 2, 2020, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.4205. DOI : 10.4000/transposition.4205
Jardin Étienne (dir.), Music and War in Europe from the French Revolution to WWI, Turnhout, Brepols, 2016.
Johnson Bruce et Cloonan Martin, Dark Side of the Tune: Popular Music and Violence, Farnham, Ashgate, 2009. DOI : 10.4324/9781315095127
Kaltenecker Martin, « Paysage endivisionné. Notes sur les frontières acoustiques de la guerre », Transposition, no 6, 2016, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.1615. DOI : 10.4000/transposition.1615
Kaltenecker Martin, « “What Scenes! – What Sounds!” Some Remarks on Soundscapes in War Times », Jardin Étienne (dir.), Music and War in Europe from the French Revolution to WWI, Turnhout, Brepols, 2016, p. 3-27.
Kay Sarah, « Songs of War: The Voice of Bertran de Born », Transposition, no Hors-série 2, 2020, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.3785. DOI : 10.4000/transposition.3785
Malcomson Hettie, « On Sensationalism, Violence and Academic Knowledge », Transposition, no Hors-série 2, 2020, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.4931. DOI : 10.4000/transposition.4931
Moore Rachel, Performing Propaganda: Musical Life and Culture in Paris during the First World War, Woodbridge, The Boydell Press, 2018. DOI : 10.2307/j.ctt22zmbd2
Nuxoll Cornelia, « Culprit or Accomplice: Observations on the Role and Perception of Music in Violent Contexts in the Sierra Leone War », Transposition, no Hors-série 2, 2020, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.4382. DOI : 10.4000/transposition.4382
Ochoa Gautier Ana María, « El silencio como armamento sonoro », de Gamboa Camila et Uribe María Victoria (dir.), Los silencios de la guerra, Bogotá, Editorial Universidad del Rosario, 2017, p. 117-157.
Ochoa Gautier Ana María, Aurality: Listening and Knowledge in Nineteenth-Century Colombia, Durham, Duke University Press, 2014.
Ochoa Gautier Ana María, « A manera de introducción: la materialidad de lo musical y su relación con la violencia », Trans, no 10, 2006, https://www.redalyc.org/articulo.oa?id=82201001.
O’Connell John Morgan, « Sound Bites: Music as Violence », Transposition, no Hors-série 2, 2020, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.4524. DOI : 10.4000/transposition.4524
O’Connell John Morgan et Castelo-Branco Salwa el-Shawan (dir.), Music and Conflict, Urbana, University of Illinois Press, 2010.
Papaeti Anna, “On Music, Torture and Detention: Reflections on Issues of Research and Discipline”, Transposition, no. Hors-série 2, 2020, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.5289. DOI : 10.4000/transposition.5289
Petit Élise, Musique et politique en Allemagne : du IIIe Reich à l’aube de la guerre froide, Paris, Presses de l’Université Paris-Sorbonne, 2018.
Pettan Svanibor, Music, Politics, and War: Views from Croatia, Zagreb, Institute of Ethnology and Folklore Research, 1998.
Pieslak Jonathan, Sound Targets: American Soldiers and Music in the Iraq War, Bloomington, Indiana University Press, 2009.
Pilzer Joshua D., Hearts of Pine: Songs in the Lives of Three Korean Survivors of the Japanese « Comfort Women », New York, Oxford University Press, 2012.
Rice Timothy, « Ethnomusicology in Times of Trouble », Yearbook for Traditional Music, vol. 46, 2014, p. 191-209.
Stoichita Victor A., « Affordance to Kill: Sound Agency and Auditory Experiences of a Norwegian Terrorist and American Soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan », Transposition, no Hors-série 2, 2020, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.4065. DOI : 10.4000/transposition.4065
Stoichita Victor A., « Musicopathies. La musique est-elle bonne pour la santé ? », Terrain, no 68, 2017, p. 4-25.
Sykes Jim, « Ontologies of Acoustic Endurance: Rethinking Wartime Sound and Listening », Sound Studies, vol. 4, no 1, 2018, p. 35-60. DOI : 10.1080/20551940.2018.1461049
Varon Jeremy, « Reflections on a Revolutionary and Music », Transposition, no Hors-série 2, 2020, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.4644. DOI : 10.4000/transposition.4644
Velasco Pufleau Luis, « De la musique à la lutte armée, de 1968 à Action directe : entretien avec Jean-Marc Rouillan », Transposition, no Hors-série 2, 2020, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.3709. DOI : 10.4000/transposition.3709
Velasco-Pufleau Luis, « Quand il ne reste que la guerre pour tuer le silence : Écouter No One Is Innocent après le 13 novembre 2015 », Volume !, vol. 15, no 2, 2019, p. 91-99.
Velasco-Pufleau Luis, « No sound is innocent : réflexions sur l’appropriation et la transformation de l’expérience sonore de la violence extrême », Filigrane, no 23, 2018, https://revues.mshparisnord.fr/filigrane/index.php?id=888.
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Volcler Juliette, Le son comme arme : les usages policiers et militaires du son, Paris, La Découverte, 2011.
Williams Gavin (dir.), Hearing the Crimean War: Wartime Sound and the Unmaking of Sense, Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2019.
Worley Matthew, « Guitars Give Way to Guns: A Commentary on an Interview with Jean-Marc Rouillan », Transposition, no Hors-série 2, 2020, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.4284. DOI : 10.4000/transposition.4284
Younge Gary, « In these Bleak Times, Imagine a World where You Can Thrive », The Guardian, https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/jan/10/bleak-times-thrive-last-column-guardian, 10 January 2020, consulté le 25 février 2020.

Notes
1 Alighieri Dante, La Divine Comédie : l’Enfer, Risset Jacqueline (trad.), Paris, GF Flammarion, 2004, p. 41.
2 Ibid., p. 43.
3 Ibid., p. 311.
4 Ibid.

5 Velasco-Pufleau Luis (dir.), « Musique et conflits armés après 1945 », Transposition, no 4, 2014, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.407.

6 Pettan Svanibor, Music, Politics, and War: Views from Croatia, Zagreb, Institute of Ethnology and Folklore Research, 1998.

7 Fast Susan et Pegley Kip, Music, Politics, and Violence, Middletown, Wesleyan University Press, 2012 ; Johnson Bruce et Cloonan Martin, Dark Side of the Tune: Popular Music and Violence, Farnham, Ashgate, 2009 ; Grant Morag Josephine, Möllemann Rebecca, Morlandstö Ingvill, Münz Simone Christine et Nuxoll Cornelia, « Music and Conflict: Interdisciplinary Perspectives », Interdisciplinary Science Reviews, vol. 35, no 2, 2010, p. 183-198 ; O’Connell John Morgan et Castelo-Branco Salwa el-Shawan (dir.), Music and Conflict, Urbana, University of Illinois Press, 2010 ; Ochoa Gautier Ana María, « A manera de introducción: la materialidad de lo musical y su relación con la violencia », Trans, no 10, 2006, https://www.redalyc.org/articulo.oa?id=82201001 ; Stoichita Victor A., « Musicopathies. La musique est-elle bonne pour la santé ? », Terrain, no 68, 2017, p. 4-25 ; Volcler Juliette, Le son comme arme : les usages policiers et militaires du son, Paris, La Découverte, 2011.

8 Voir par exemple, Cusick Suzanne G., « “You are in a place that is out of the world. . .”: Music in the Detention Camps of the “Global War on Terror” », Journal of the Society for American Music, vol. 2, no 1, 2008, p. 1-26 ; Daughtry J. Martin, Listening to War: Sound, Music, Trauma, and Survival in Wartime Iraq, New York, Oxford University Press, 2015 ; Gilman Lisa, My Music, my War: The Listening Habits of U.S. Troops in Iraq and Afghanistan, Middletown, Wesleyan University Press, 2016 ; Pieslak Jonathan, Sound Targets: American Soldiers and Music in the Iraq War, Bloomington, Indiana University Press, 2009.

9 Voir par exemple, Audoin-Rouzeau Stéphane, Buch Esteban, Chimènes Myriam et Durosoir Georgie (dir.), La Grande Guerre des musiciens, Lyon, Symétrie, 2009 ; Birdsall Carolyn, Nazi Soundscapes: Sound, Technology and Urban Space in Germany, 1933-1945, Amsterdam, Amsterdam University Press, 2012 ; Fauser Annegret, Sounds of War: Music in the United States during World War II, New York, Oxford University Press, 2013 ; Hartford Kassandra, « Listening to the Din of the First World War », Sound Studies, vol. 3, no 2, 2017, p. 98-114 ; Kaltenecker Martin, « Paysage endivisionné. Notes sur les frontières acoustiques de la guerre », Transposition, no 6, 2016, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.1615 ; Moore Rachel, Performing Propaganda: Musical Life and Culture in Paris during the First World War, Woodbridge, The Boydell Press, 2018 ; Petit Élise, Musique et politique en Allemagne : du IIIe Reich à l’aube de la guerre froide, Paris, Presses de l’Université Paris-Sorbonne, 2018.

10 Voir par exemple, Grant M. J. et Papaeti Anna (dir.), « Music and Torture | Music and Punishment », The World of Music, vol. 2, no 1, 2013, https://www.jstor.org/stable/i24316991 ; Jardin Étienne (dir.), Music and War in Europe from the French Revolution to WWI, Turnhout, Brepols, 2016 ; Ochoa Gautier Ana María, « El silencio como armamento sonoro », de Gamboa Camila et Uribe María Victoria (dir.), Los silencios de la guerra, Bogotá, Editorial Universidad del Rosario, 2017, p. 117-157 ; Sykes Jim, « Ontologies of Acoustic Endurance: Rethinking Wartime Sound and Listening », Sound Studies, vol. 4, no 1, 2018, p. 35-60 ; Williams Gavin (dir.), Hearing the Crimean War: Wartime Sound and the Unmaking of Sense, Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2019.

11 Ochoa Gautier, « A manera de introducción ».

12 « Only the privileged and the naive believe people’s achievements are purely the product of their own genius », Younge Gary, « In these Bleak Times, Imagine a World where You Can Thrive », The Guardian, https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/jan/10/bleak-times-thrive-last-column-guardian, 10 January 2020, consulté le 25 février 2020.

13 Le programme complet est consultable ici https://agenda.unifr.ch/e/fr/4349

14 Je voudrais remercier les auteur.e.s qui ont participé à ce numéro spécial pour leur générosité et leur patience. Merci aussi aux relecteurs et relectrices anonymes qui ont contribué à travers leurs commentaires et leurs suggestions à améliorer les textes de ce numéro. Enfin, je voudrais exprimer ma gratitude aux membres du comité de rédaction de Transposition pour leur soutien dans ce projet ainsi qu’aux collègues et ami.e.s qui ont accueilli mes recherches à l’Université de Fribourg, à la Fondation Maison des sciences de l’homme (FMSH) et à l’Université de Berne.

15 Rice Timothy, « Ethnomusicology in Times of Trouble », Yearbook for Traditional Music, vol. 46, 2014, p. 191-209.

16 Ibid., p. 192.

17 Kaltenecker Martin, « “What Scenes! – What Sounds!” Some Remarks on Soundscapes in War Times », Jardin Étienne (dir.), Music and War in Europe from the French Revolution to WWI, Turnhout, Brepols, 2016, p. 3-27.

18 Daughtry, Listening to War, p. 124.

19 Daughtry, Listening to War ; Gilman, My music, my War ; Pieslak, Sound Targets.

20 Guida Michael, « Nature’s Sonic Order on the Western Front », Transposition, no Hors-série 2, 2020, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.4770.

21 O’Connell John Morgan, « Sound Bites: Music as Violence », Transposition, no Hors-série 2, 2020, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.4524.

22 Sykes, « Ontologies of acoustic endurance » ; Pilzer Joshua D., Hearts of Pine: Songs in the Lives of Three Korean Survivors of the Japanese « Comfort Women », New York, Oxford University Press, 2012 ; Velasco-Pufleau Luis, « No sound is innocent : réflexions sur l’appropriation et la transformation de l’expérience sonore de la violence extrême », Filigrane, no 23, 2018, https://revues.mshparisnord.fr/filigrane/index.php?id=888 ; Velasco-Pufleau Luis, « Quand il ne reste que la guerre pour tuer le silence : Écouter No One Is Innocent après le 13 novembre 2015 », Volume !, vol. 15, no 2, 2019, p. 91-99.

23 Hock Nikita, « Making Home, Making Sense: Aural Experiences of Warsaw and East Galician Jews in Subterranean Shelters during the Holocaust », Transposition, no Hors-série 2, 2020, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.4205.

24 « An acoustically tuned exploration of the written archive », Ochoa Gautier Ana María, Aurality: Listening and Knowledge in Nineteenth-Century Colombia, Durham, Duke University Press, 2014, p. 3.

25 Fauser Annegret, « Sound, Music, War, and Violence: Listening from the Archive », Transposition, no Hors-série 2, 2020, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.4310.

26 « Is always an attack upon a person’s dignity, sense of selfhood, and future », Evans Brad et Lennard Natasha, Violence: Humans in Dark Times, San Francisco, City Lights Books, 2018, p. 3.

27 « Una de las características de la violencia es la redefinición del espacio acústico », Ochoa Gautier, « A manera de introducción ».

28 Papaeti Anna, “On Music, Torture and Detention: Reflections on Issues of Research and Discipline”, Transposition, no. Hors-série 2, 2020, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.5289.

29 Kay Sarah, « Songs of War: The Voice of Bertran de Born », Transposition, no Hors-série 2, 2020, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.3785.

30 Daughtry J. Martin, « Did Music Cause the End of the World? », Transposition, no Hors-série 2, 2020, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.5192.

31 Alighieri, La Divine Comédie : l’Enfer, p. 259.

32 Malcomson Hettie, « On Sensationalism, Violence and Academic Knowledge », Transposition, no Hors-série 2, 2020, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.4931.

33 Stoichita Victor A., « Affordance to Kill: Sound Agency and Auditory Experiences of a Norwegian Terrorist and American Soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan », Transposition, no Hors-série 2, 2020, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.4065.

34 Nuxoll Cornelia, « Culprit or Accomplice: Observations on the Role and Perception of Music in Violent Contexts in the Sierra Leone War », Transposition, no Hors-série 2, 2020, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.4382.

35 Velasco Pufleau Luis, « De la musique à la lutte armée, de 1968 à Action directe : entretien avec Jean-Marc Rouillan », Transposition, no Hors-série 2, 2020, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.3709.

36 Worley Matthew, « Guitars Give Way to Guns: A Commentary on an Interview with Jean-Marc Rouillan », Transposition, no Hors-série 2, 2020, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.4284.

37 Brown Timothy Scott, « Going Underground: The Politics of Free Music around 1968 », Transposition, no Hors-série 2, 2020, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.4863.

38 Varon Jeremy, « Reflections on a Revolutionary and Music », Transposition, no Hors-série 2, 2020, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.4644.

39 « Long after ceasefire, music continues to play an oftentimes fundamental role in celebrating or commemorating wars and warriors, thus functioning as a fundamental toolkit for collective memory which itself, all too often, becomes mobilised in the service of wars yet to come », Grant Morag Josephine, « On Music and War », Transposition, no Hors-série 2, 2020, https://doi.org/10.4000/transposition.4469.

Auteur : Luis Velasco-Pufleau
Musicologue et artiste sonore, Luis Velasco-Pufleau est chercheur au Walter Benjamin Kolleg et à l’Institut de musicologie de l’Université de Berne. Son travail constitue une réflexion critique sur les liens entre musique et politique dans les sociétés contemporaines. En tant que chercheur et artiste sonore, il explore des formes d’écriture innovantes à la croisée de la création artistique et de la recherche en sciences humaines et sociales. ORCID : https://orcid.org/0000-0002-1330-974X

Articles du même auteur
- De la musique à la lutte armée, de 1968 à Action directe : entretien avec Jean-Marc Rouillan [Texte intégral]. Paru dans Transposition, Hors-série 2 | 2020
- Matthieu Saladin, Esthétique de l’improvisation libre. Expérimentation musicale et politique [Texte intégral] Dijon, Les presses du réel, 2014, 391 p. Paru dans Transposition, 6 | 2016
- Après les attaques terroristes de l’État islamique à Paris. Enquête sur les rapports entre musique, propagande et violence armée [Texte intégral] Paru dans Transposition, 5 | 2015
- Conflits armés, idéologie et technologie dans Für Paul Dessau de Luigi Nono [Texte intégral] Paru dans Transposition, 4 | 2014
- La musique comme voie possible d’une histoire comparée des conflits armés. [Texte intégral] Entretien avec Didier Francfort. Paru dans Transposition, 4 | 2014

Florage

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Message par Florage le Mar 28 Juil - 9:20


LE GROOVE DE MARX CONTRE ADORNO
entre autre une critique d'Adorno, que nous avions engagée dans MUSIQUE ET PENSÉE
A Marxist theory of music: it’s all in the groove
Kate Bradley, revolutionary socialism in tne 21st century, 17 June 2018
Much analysis of modern music focuses on lyrical content, but how can we understand modern musical forms? What relation do they have to the capitalist world in which they’ve developed? To answer these questions Kate Bradley interviewed Mark Abel, author of Groove: An Aesthetic of Measured Time.

MUSIQUE et RAPPORTS SOCIAUX Salsa-1397961_960_720
A Salsa band playing on the street in Trinidad, Cuba. Image: Pixabay
Is it fair to say that Groove is a defence of popular music from a Marxist perspective? Could you summarise your argument in brief?

It is a defence of popular music, but in the first place it is an attempt to explain why the music of our time sounds the way it does. In studying music, I hold to the Marxist principle that cultural phenomena are shaped by the material practices of the society that produces them. Culture also tends to get naturalised so that it seems to most people that things couldn’t be any other way. In the case of music, what I call ‘groove music’ is so ubiquitous that we are tempted to think that it’s just the way that music is, but it’s important to have a historical picture which can show that groove arises in music around the beginning of the twentieth century, initially in America. In turn, it represents an intensification of an aspect of music – meter – which dates from only a few hundred years before that.

What is your definition of ‘groove music’?

‘Groove’ is a word used by musicians to describe the way that the different layers of music, the various instruments and voices, lock together to produce a tight overall rhythmic feel. Although all musical ensembles need to be coordinated in time, I argue that groove is unique to the popular music of the twentieth (and twenty-first) century and is not a feature of ‘classical’ music or folk or traditional musics. My analysis of groove identifies four characteristics: strict metronomic timing; a highly structured meter; backbeat – an emphasis on the off-beats of the meter; and syncopation. Other musics might display one or two of these, but not consistently all four.

Your argument seems to hinge on how different people experience time, especially people of different classes and historical periods. Why do you think time is crucial to understanding music?

Time is an obvious place to start for a materialist understanding of music because time is a feature of both social life and music. I think it is reasonable to assume that there is a close connection between musical time and social time, and that the way that a society organises the lived experience of time finds its expression in the language of music. Historically, we can see this happening as the temporal structures of music (how rhythm is organised) change as a result of developments in society.

So, the emergence of meter – represented by the time-signature in Western notation – can be traced to the urbanisation of European society, as the rhythms of daily life begin to be organised less around the natural phenomena of sunrise and sunset varying with the seasons, and become governed instead by the measured time of the newly invented clock. I identify the intensification of this into ‘groove’ with the penetration of measured time still further into people’s lives with monopoly capitalism, as clock time became standardised across the world, and as workers were increasingly subjected to the discipline of clocking on and off and time and motion studies. Underlying this is Marx’s insight that value in a capitalist economy is determined by abstract labour time. Abstract time is at the heart of social reproduction under capitalism and I describe groove as an “aesthetic of measured time”.

You criticise thinkers like Theodor Adorno for their retreat from the experience of time that most people have, and you suggest that the most dialectical approach to understanding music actually embraces ‘reified’ or ‘abstract’ time – the conception of time used by capitalists to measure and exploit workers’ labour. How does this work? How can listening to or making popular music help to fight back against capitalism?

It’s important to note that I am heavily influenced by Adorno’s materialist approach to music. From him I take the powerful idea that music’s meaning is found in the way that society’s material processes become embedded in the very language and form of music. But Adorno hears only alienation in the rhythm of the popular music of his day, and advocates instead modernist composers who avoided any sense of meter or rhythmic regularity in their music. This is part of a general intellectual revolt in the early twentieth century against the stultifying effects of industrial capitalism and its cult of abstract time on society, but simply turning one’s back on measured time is not a realistic option for most people.

This is where a class differentiation enters the analysis. It is striking that both groove music based on measured time and modernist trends which reject it emerge at the same historical moment. Modernism is the preserve of a section of society’s cultural elite (albeit a radical one) while groove comes from below, circulating amongst workers and ordinary people. Making use of abstract capitalist time has a parallel in the organised working class movement. The first proletarians tried to refuse the tyranny of the clock by being late and skiving. By the late nineteenth century trade unionists had learned that the only way to make gains was to fight the bosses on their own terrain – accepting the discipline of measured time, but using it to fight for a shorter working day.

I don’t suggest that listening or making groove music helps the fightback against capitalism. Nor do I say that groove music is proletarian music. Art doesn’t match up neatly to class interests. But I do defend groove music against high-brow criticism as a valid aesthetic response to the experience of capitalist society.

Marxist critics of pop music have pointed to capitalist control of the music industry – say, ‘manufactured’ pop like the music made by Justin Bieber or X Factor winners – and have said that it is used to distract people, to exploit musicians to make more money for their bosses. What do you think of this argument? It is possible that some groove music is just the sound of capitalism?

That is certainly arguable and is essentially Adorno’s position – that groove music is simply the music of capitalism and we should reject it. But this relies on a view of culture as a tool wielded by the capitalist class. I think we need a more dialectical conception. In the first place, as I have explained, the music of our society cannot, in one sense, be anything other than the music of capitalism. That is central to a materialist understanding of art and culture. But in incorporating and manipulating the nature of time in our society, groove music does not merely reinforce capitalism. Musicians are taking an aspect of society and treating it aesthetically. Abstract measured time becomes the object of free play rather than utility. I believe we are attracted to it because we sense that through music we have taken control – albeit temporarily – of an aspect of our existence which normally dominates us. An oppressive aspect of the world becomes a means of artistic expression.

It is true that not all groove music does this successfully, and that much popular music is churned out purely to fill the catalogues of Spotify and Apple Music. But nonetheless it’s important to recognise the degree of autonomy involved in the best of it.

In Groove, you criticise the term ‘black music’ and suggest that ‘groove’ music is not African in descent. Why? Is there no case that some music – for example, grime or hip-hop – might only be possible due to a uniquely ‘black Atlantic’ experience (as Paul Gilroy has argued) that has happened because of the conditions of colonialism and racism experienced by people of colour?

There is no doubt that black Americans have played a huge role in the development of groove music and that it is an important part of black culture. Because of this, many people have argued that the rhythmic quality I describe as groove is African in origin. I don’t think this is true. In the first place, groove as I define it is not simply a feature of those genres of popular music commonly thought of as ‘black music’. In any case, the concept of ‘black music’ is problematic. At the level of musical language, it’s not really possible to talk about different music corresponding to different social groups except in the most conditional and contingent way.

But secondly, groove is not a feature of traditional African musics. Today, globalisation means that African urban popular musics have adopted the groove principle, but the traditional music of Africa is not organised on metrical lines. The notion of on- and off-beats on which both backbeat and syncopation rely is absent, making this music more akin in its temporal organisation to European music before the development of meter.

A range of different musical cultures, both African and European, came together to synthesise Western popular music in America. But it is my argument that its central distinguishing feature – groove – was new and was shaped by monopoly capitalism.

Which is more important for assessing the value and politics of music – how it was produced, its aesthetics, or the contexts in which it is received?

While it’s obvious that people’s feelings about music are shaped by the conditions under which it is experienced, I think it’s important to oppose the view, common among postmodernists, that the listener can freely determine the meaning they take from music. As a Marxist musicologist (for want of a better term) my focus is to try to understand how musical meaning is encoded in the language of music.

But it’s also not a coincidence that groove music emerges with a new, more collective way of creating music, one based on improvisation, or ‘jamming’. This is completely different from both the classical model where the composer sets out the entire piece in advance, and the folk model in which traditional tunes are handed down. Although my definition of groove doesn’t depend on it, I think there is something special about a group of individuals coming together to create a groove, something that is lacking, for instance, in music created by a single person using the tool which is the epitome of measured time – the computer.

What are your favourite kinds of music, and do you think this reflects the value system implied in Groove?

I got interested in this area when, as a musician, I realised that the rhythmic skills and mind-set I needed to play funk, soca and r&b were of a different order from the classical training that I had received. Ever since, I have been attracted to music that isn’t just groove music, but puts groove centre-stage. I’m fascinated by salsa and Cuban-derived music and also have a soft-spot for reggae and dub. And it seems to me that jazz is the arena which provides the greatest opportunities for the generation of collectively improvised grooves.

There’s a line from Debord’s Society of the Spectacle which I quote in the book in which he describes a liberated society as one based on the free play of “autonomous yet federated times”. It seems to me to sum up the politics of improvised grooves perfectly.

Groove: An Aesthetic of Measured Time
by Mark Abel is published by Haymarket Books, 2014


MUSIQUE et RAPPORTS SOCIAUX 9789004242944
What is the relationship between music and time? How does musical rhythm express our social experience of time? In Groove: An Aesthetic of Measured Time, Mark Abel explains the rise to prominence in Western music of a new way of organising rhythm: groove. He provides a historical account of its emergence around the turn of the twentieth century, and analyses the musical components which make it work.

Tracing the influence of key philosophical arguments about the nature of time on musical aesthetics, Mark Abel draws on materialist interpretations of art and culture to challenge those, like Adorno, who criticise popular music’s metrical regularity. He concludes that groove does not simply reflect the temporality of contemporary society, but, by incorporating abstract time into its very structure, is capable of effecting a critique of it.

More about music and politics from rs21:

- Ruth Gregory, Mitch Mitchell and Allan Struthers discuss Rock Against Racism
- Amy Downham reviews Dave Randall’s book Sound System
- Colin Revolting interviews Redskins’ Martin Hewes about music as a force for change

Florage

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Message par Florage le Sam 1 Aoû - 9:16


"Why is music theory so white? "
Danielle Shlomit Sofer, PhD (they/them/she/her) a écrit:@ShlomitSofer", 15 juin 2020

Why is music theory so white? Why is SMT (@SMT_musictheory) still 84.2% white and 62.5% men? Here’s my answer:
Specters of Sex
Tracing the Tools and Techniques of Contemporary Music Analysis
[1]
Danielle Sofer, 04/11/2019
media scholar, music theorist, musicologist, performer,
activist invested in intercultural ethics and sociotechnical transparency

l'article est long, je ne donne que l'introduction, le plan et la conclusion
Music has often served as a vehicle for sexual expression. But within a musical context saturated with many sonic phenomena, music-analytical tools can be limited in their ability to pinpoint evidence of sex acts, pleasure, or satisfaction. Centering on sonic experience and perception, this article challenges the common trope of the disembodied and disinterested music theorist by proposing that, rather than neglecting sexual discourses, like-minded music theorists have instead established a veritable field founded on the commonly-held belief that sex and music are (in some cases) interchangeable. The article proposes that the meta-theorization of these engagements constitutes a discursive “social epistemology” thereby positioning such diverse contributions as part of the core music-theoretical “standard” of what was once called “mainstream music theory.”

MUSICO-SEXUAL ORIENTATIONS
PITFALLS OF MUSIC THEORY’S HOMONORMATIVE DISCOURSE
COMPOSING SEXUALITY IN THEORY
RECORDING SEX (SOUNDS)
UNPACKING NEOLIBERAL (UN)CONSCIOUS BIAS
CENTERING THE USER IN MUSIC-THEORETICAL DISCOURSES

CONCLUSION
Above, I examined the phenomenological distinction between “embodiment” and “orientations” in Sara Ahmed’s work, where the former takes as given the familiarity of one’s surroundings and objects that populate that ecology while seeking to bracket out an object’s “fundamental ontology,” to use properly Heideggerian terminology.[135] The problem one encounters is that there is nothing truly “fundamental” – in the sense of inherent – in an object without accounting for the observer, spectator, listener, or analyst’s own proximal orientation, without accounting for the ways in which theorists navigate the world, how we have arrived before the writing table, to return to Husserl’s example, or how we have come to know a particular piece of music, looking to music theorists. This personal history is all part of the concept of “doing things” Ahmed articulates, a concept she picks up again later in her monograph What’s the Use? On the Uses of Use.[136] In a blogpost preceding release of this monograph, Ahmed explains the book’s methodology in relation to her particular fascination with the word “use”:

[W]e learn about use from use: use is how we get a handle on things when we are occupied as well as offering a way of talking about occupations and handles. My aim has also been to widen the scope of what we mean by utilitarianism by thinking how the concept of utility exercised within that tradition relates to more ordinary uses of use. I also investigate utilitarianism as an administrative history that helps us to understand how use becomes a way of building worlds. I am especially interested in how a requirement to be useful falls unevenly on subjects, or how utility as a referential system (useful for, useful to) is tightened or loosened depending on one’s location in that system.[137]

In the previous sections I examined a number of ways in which the word “sex” can be used as means toward music-analytical ends. Well, more accurately, rather than analytical ends, theorists use analysis together with sex to elucidate musical hearings. Ahmed’s method of “following words around” necessarily draws on her previous work around “orientations,” a related (though heavily updated) enterprise to Cone’s in the ways her notion of “orientations” bridges the pointillistic tasks of independent theorists with the macroscopic socio-historical action of queer discourses. Ahmed’s “orientations” tend to navigate discursive paths differently from the “straight and narrow” or “well trodden” routes sedimented by the demographic majority of a given society or intellectual discipline.[138]

In this regard, a key difference Ahmed articulates between historical notions of “orientation” and processes that might queer orientations is in acknowledging how phenomenology is necessarily located, situated within the borders that define us as people of a particular place to do particular things. According to Ahmed, traditional notions of phenomenological orientation tend to bracket out crucial notions of identity, such as gender, sexuality, race, or more realistically, the many ways in which we find ourselves to be gendered, sexed, and raced. She asks, “If whiteness gains currency by being unnoticed, then what does it mean to notice whiteness? What does making the invisible marks of privilege more visible actually do?”[139] These questions become pertinent when pursuing indictments against music theory’s racialized and gendered insularity. Lee points out that, for Ahmed, a history of phenomenology from Husserl to Maurice Merleau-Ponty articulates modes of inheritance characterized as “lines of whiteness – the philosophers’ thought expresses the privilege that comes from being white.” Lee then contrasts this image of continuity with “the phenomenology of non-white bodies [which are comprised of] stoppage, obstructions, and obstacles – in other words, the absence of a line.”[140] But actually, rather than pointillistic gaps, Ahmed speaks to the reach and limits of orientations; regarding the phenomenological horizons of such perceptions, she extends the existing phenomenological repertoire to enrich Husserl’s philosophical investigations by queering them, by exposing the familiarity of whiteness to throw into question the “somatic norms” that make non-white bodies feel “out of place” by intervening her own positionality – exactly as I have done in this article, interspersing music-theoretical writings with musicological, sociological, and historical writing about sex in music by scholars whose work might ordinarily fall outside the bounds of music theory.[141] I extend the music-adjacent queries to musically distant writing about sex in technology and philosophy both to position the words of women of color in proximity to music theory but also to show how using sex as common ground introduces an alternative scope for music-theoretical inquiry by providing nuanced scholarly expertise from fields that could enrich currently pervasive modes of musical analysis, even for those theorists who are already concerned about music’s confluence with sex and gender.

Notes
1
This essay is indebted to the wonderfully supportive online community of music scholars. I wish to thank Eamonn Bell and Ezra Teboul, who encouraged me, through their newly formed group blog on sound and technology TAXIS, to combine my love of music theory with my aspirations for compassionate and transparent socio-technical systems. I also want to thank Emily Gale and Hannah Robbins for volunteering their time and for providing valuable feedback in later stages of revision. Lastly, I am grateful to Christian Utz for inviting me to write on this topic and for providing a supportive platform in which to express my frustrations with music theory’s past while guiding my reflections with the hopeful promise of a more socially aware music theory. I extend my profound gratitude to Sophia Leithold for her assistance with the German translation of the abstract.

(parmi les) References
Ahmed, Sara. 2007. “A Phenomenology of Whiteness.” Feminist Theory 8/2: 149–168.
Ahmed, Sara. 2012. On Being Included: Racism and Diversity in Institutional Life. Durham, NC: Duke University Press.
Danielle Sofer talks about music and sex at Bright Club Dublin on November 16th, 2016.
Filmed and edited by Mark Cantan.


Florage

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Message par Florage le Jeu 6 Aoû - 9:05


l'héritage de Marx de l'ouverture avec Ernst Bloch
à l'économisme réducteur de
The Political Economy of Cultural Production: Essays on Music and Class
signalés, des livres sur Ernst Bloch, sans conteste plus fécond et actuel que les vieilleries d'Adorno et son rejet des musiques populaires et du jazz), plus un texte général en PDF, The Political Economy of Cultural Production: Essays on Music and Class
source des trois textes : Music History and Historical Materialism Reflections and Possibilities Friday, Abstracts and Speaker Biographies, 13 April 2018
Why Musical Creativity Matters: Marx, Bloch, and a Non-Hedonic Theory of Artistic Value
Beth M. Snyder (University of Surrey)
MUSIQUE et RAPPORTS SOCIAUX IMG_3852

Neither Marx nor Engels ever completed a systematic treatment of aesthetic issues (though Marx had, on two separate occasions, planned to do so); nor did either devote more than a few words to music in those aesthetic writings that have survived. Despite this, we can excavate from their comments on the intimate relationship between artistic practices and social and economic structures, a non-hedonic theory of the value of creative praxis—one that privileges art’s ethical import over its aesthetic dimension. This non-hedonic theory, which has been taken up by and transformed in Marxist intellectual Ernst Bloch’s philosophy of music, has much to contribute to our understanding of the value of creative activity.

In this paper, I begin with a brief examination of Marx and Engels’ own contribution to the discourse regarding why artistic value matters. This preliminary discussion serves as a point of entry into Bloch’s provocative theory of music’s significance to social progress, which radically expands on Marxist non-hedonic theory and is unusual in its emphasis on music’s central role in the realization of human potential. In investigating Bloch’s arguments about the value of musical activity to individual and communal well-being, I pay particular attention to two aspects of his thought: the materialist underpinnings of his philosophy and the mechanisms by which Bloch grants artistic activity real ethical import.

I conclude by suggesting ways that Bloch’s theory speaks to 21st-century music historians who are attempting to rethink the relationship between music and society.

Biography
Beth Snyder is an Associate Tutor in the Department of Music and Media at the University of Surrey, having spent the previous year as a Visiting Lecturer (of music) at Scripps College and (of philosophy) at California State University, San Bernardino. Motivated by an interest in music’s role in the construction and critique of national identity and in the establishment of cultural legitimacy, her current research explores the political uses of Greek myth on the East German opera stage.
The Role of Performance in the Musical Philosophy of Ernst Bloch
Naomi Woo (University of Cambridge)
MUSIQUE et RAPPORTS SOCIAUX Naomi-woo-conductor-30-under-30

Although the musical philosophy of Ernst Bloch is beginning to gain more notice within the study of musicology, very little attention has been placed on the relevance of Bloch’s work to the study and practice of performance. In fact, Bloch’s musical philosophy not only relies on performance—and indeed his own descriptions of music are often ephemeral, experiential, and sensual—but is also particularly well-suited to understanding it. Furthermore, the utopian promise that Bloch sees in music has much in common with the act of performance; indeed, performance studies scholars outside of music have theorised productively about the relationship between performance and utopia.

In this paper, I focus on exploring the performative dimensions of Bloch’s philosophy, taking seriously his belief that the site of musical meaning lies not in musical structure and form but in its material and physical presence. In particular, I suggest that his belief in music’s potential to contain social meaning relies on such a physical understanding. Using piano music—and my own performance—as a case study, I suggest that Bloch offers tools for finding musical meaning in the sensuousness of the performing body and the phenomenology of the performer.

Biography

Naomi Woo is a pianist, conductor, and researcher, with a particular interest in contemporary music. Performance highlights in 2017-2018 include conducting Holst’s chamber opera Savitri (ADC Theatre), performing Carnival of the Animals alongside pianist Tom Poster (West Road Concert Hall) and assisting conductors Sir Mark Elder and Jac Van Steen with the Cambridge University Orchestra. Currently Gates Cambridge Scholar and PhD candidate in musicology at Clare College, Naomi also holds a BA in mathematics & philosophy from Yale University, and degrees in piano performance from the Yale School of Music and Université de Montréal.
Ernst Bloch's Utopian Ton of Hope
Michael Gallope, Contemporary Music Review Volume 31, 2012
Issue 5-6: Music and Philosophy, Pages 371-387 | Published online: 12 Apr 2013
MUSIQUE et RAPPORTS SOCIAUX Mikegallope-phuong-1210-870x580

Abstract
Ernst Bloch's metaphysical philosophy of music was an important influence on the work of Theodor Adorno, and led to a series of debates about the role of art and aesthetics in political struggles, particularly among the left. This essay develops a few central themes in Bloch's speculative interpretation of music. It begins by outlining historical and heuristic contexts for understanding the universality of Bloch's central political thought. It then goes on to offer an analysis and elaboration of a few of Bloch's observations about music in the Principle of hope that concern the meaning of der Ton as an abstract bearer of musical meaning. Finally, the essay suggests that Bloch should be understood not only skeptically as an ardent (and outmoded) defender of absolute music, but sensitively as a sophisticated thinker of speculative historicism and an imaginative theorist of musical meaning.
The Political Economy of Cultural Production: Essays on Music and Class
Ian J. Seda Irizarry, University of Massachusetts Amherst, isedairi@gmail.com, 9-2013
MUSIQUE et RAPPORTS SOCIAUX CsfTdyBVMAErY9Y
analyser le contexte économique et politique de la production musicale est une chose *

* je l'ai fait en 2002 concernant le jazz dans
I - SO WHAT ? JAZZ ET PROBLEMES DES HOMMES  
I1 le contexte spectaculaire du jazz
- économie quand tu nous tiens
- culture et crise de l'art dans la Société du Spectacle
[...]

je comprends bien que le titre l'exclut, mais le faire sans parler de la musique même relève d'un économisme réducteur assez éloigné de la démarche de Marx concernant l'art. C'est le défaut que me semble traduire la table des matières, défaut que n'ont pas les approches précédentes autour de Ernst Bloch, croisant musicologie et critique de l'économie politique

on y verra encore une sorte de gauchisme esthétique, juger d'une œuvre, positivement ou négativement, en fonction de ses conditions économiques de production et de ses intentions politiques. Un pas on l'a vu que n'hésitent pas à franchir certains "communisateurs" dans leurs choix poétiques, régression stalinienne s'il en est, encore un exploit des clowns d'ultragauche...
TABLE OF CONTENTS
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS.................................................................................................v
ABSTRACT.........................................................................................................................x
LIST OF TABLES ........................................................................................................... xiv
CHAPTER
1. INTRODUCTION .......................................................................................................1
1.1 Defining Music ........................................................................................................6
1.2 Class Structure and its Products.............................................................................11
1.3 Commodity Production and Value Creating Labor................................................14
1.4 Commodity Producing Services and the Production of Surplus Value .................17

2. MUSIC IN THE MARXIAN TRADITION: A CRITICAL SURVEY..........................23
2.1 Introduction............................................................................................................23
2.2 Music in Marx........................................................................................................24
2.3 Music and Totality in the Marxian Tradition: The base-superstructure Metaphor.....27
2.4 The Theory of Reflection.......................................................................................34
2.5 Class and Music .....................................................................................................41
2.6 Conclusion .............................................................................................................47

3. CONNECTING MUSIC TO CLASS ............................................................................49
3.1 Introduction............................................................................................................49
3.2 Musical Scenes........................................................................................................51
3.3 Labor and Music .....................................................................................................56
3.4 Music as a Condition of Existence of Class............................................................58
3.5 Musical Labor with no Class Process.....................................................................61
3.6 Class and Non-Class Musical Scenes and Other Work Sites..................................62
3.7 Musical Labor, Class, and Aesthetics .....................................................................63
3.8 Musical Labor Embodied in a Performance ...........................................................66
3.8.1 FCP based on Musical Labor/Performance ...................................................67
3.8.2 SSCP based on Musical Labor/Performance .................................................72
3.9 Conclusion ..............................................................................................................79

4. PIRACY AND EXPLOITATION IN THE MUSIC
RECORDING INDUSTRY ...............................................................................................81
4.1 Introduction.............................................................................................................81
4.2 The MRI, Piracy, and Musicians.............................................................................83
4.3 Production and Exploitation ...................................................................................89
4.4 Production and Reproduction of Records...............................................................95
4.5 Locating Musicians in the Class Structure..............................................................96
4.6 Anti-Piracy as a Condition of Existence and the Role of Musicians .....................103
4.7 Conclusion ............................................................................................................108

5. CONCLUSION............................................................................................................110
BIBLIOGRAPHY............................................................................................................118

Florage

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Message par Florage le Sam 5 Sep - 9:00

importé de JAZZ, A SOCIAL CALL

QUELLE PROTESTATION ?

ce n'est pas moi qui prétendrais que le Jazz n'est en rien une "musique de protestation" mais il n'a jamais été que ça, et la protestation de la part des meilleurs est toujours venue par leur musique, pas d'un discours politique plaqué sur elle. D'aussi bons musiciens furent parfaitement réac ou du moins sans souci de questions raciales entre autres. Le fait est que ce furent et que ça reste massivement des musiciens blancs et mâles

la protestation fut aussi musicale dans le sens d'une lutte contre la récupération par l'"Amérique Blanche", à vrai dire l'accaparement par le Star System capitaliste d'une musique qui n'a jamais renié qu'elle était jouée pour le plaisir, née qu'elle fut dans les bordels et soutenue par les gangsters. Ainsi le bebop fut-il une réaction à l'affadissement musical de la Swing Era particulièrement par les Big Bands blancs, et le free jazz aussi un souci de sortir des sentiers battus musicaux

quant à enseigner la protestation à l'Université, ça me laisse songeur comme tous les slogans qui montent aujourd'hui des Campus américains, et qui voudraient s'inscrire dans la tradition inhérente à la musique de jazz comme porteuse de la situation sociale de la Communauté Afro-Américaine dans ses contradictions. S'il y a coupure de l'art des élites des réalités sociales, c'est parce que l'élitisme est inhérent aux rapports sociaux capitalistes, et vouloir recoller les morceaux à l'intérieur du système c'est comme le mélange de l'huile et de l'eau. Alors les artistes se donnent bonne conscience en faisant de la "musique engagée", bonnes âmes pour belle affaire qui ne change rien aux rapports sociaux

on sait que je déteste le gauchisme esthétique qui débouche inévitablement sur l'appréciation de l'art en fonction de son "message", raison pour laquelle les gauchistes peuvent tant apprécier de la merde esthétique, pourvu qu'elle les transporte, musique militante comme on dit musique militaire. Je n'ai pas au demeurant connu de gauchistes qui apprécient le jazz, leur truc étant le rock, le hard, la punk, le metal... bref, les trucs qui font marcher le commerce de la musique. Et quoi qu'il en soit, comme disait Leroi Jones


MUSIQUE et RAPPORTS SOCIAUX 2254afae7cb3790cf158663316395f9b

Jazz Has Always Been Protest Music. Can It Meet This Moment?
Giovanni Russonello, The New York Times, Sept. 3, 2020

Over the past 50 years, the music has become entrenched in academic institutions. As a result, it’s often inaccessible to, and disconnected from, many of the very people who created it: young Black Americans.

MUSIQUE et RAPPORTS SOCIAUX 06Jazz-Protest-1-superJumbo
Jazz remained a resistance music because it was the sound of Black Americans building something together,
in the face of repression.
Credit...Diana Ejaita

If the Black Lives Matter movement has an anthem, it’s probably Kendrick Lamar’s “Alright.” Five years after its release, it’s still chanted en masse by demonstrators and blasted from car stereos at protests, fluttering in the air like a liberation flag.

Like many revolutionary anthems past, this one is the work of young jazz-trained musicians. Terrace Martin’s shivering alto saxophone and Thundercat’s gauzy vocals are as powerful as the track’s spitfire refrain: “Can you hear me, can you feel me?/We gon’ be all right.”

Mr. Martin, Thundercat and the famed saxophonist Kamasi Washington came up together in Los Angeles’s Leimert Park scene, where Black music, poetry, theater and dance have blended for decades. Romantically, it’s the kind of place you’d imagine as the backbone of the jazz world, like Spike Lee’s Bed-Stuy of the 1980s or Dizzy Gillespie’s Harlem in the ’40s. But today, local scenes like this one are barely surviving. It’s the Ivory Tower, not the city, that has become the tradition’s main thoroughfare.

The music known as jazz grew up in New Orleans, in the decades after Emancipation, as Black and Creole people founded social clubs with their own marching bands. As it evolved, jazz remained a resistance music precisely because it was the sound of Black Americans building something together, in the face of repression. But at the end of the 1960s, just as calls for Black Power were motivating musicians to create their own publishing houses, venues and record labels, a new force emerged: Schools and universities across the country began welcoming jazz as America’s so-called “classical music,” canonizing its older styles and effectively freezing it in place.

This year, the pandemic and the protest movement against racial injustice have created a moment of enormous potential. Conversations about radical change and new beginnings have crept into seemingly every aspect of American life. But as jazz musicians reckon with the events of 2020, they have found themselves torn between the music’s roots in Black organizing and its present-day life in the academy.

The very institutional acceptance that many musicians sought in the mid-to-late-20th century has hitched jazz to a broken and still-segregated education system. Partly as a result, the music has become inaccessible to, and disconnected from, many of the very people who created it: young Black Americans, poorer people and others at the societal margins.

Of the more than 500 students who graduate from American universities with jazz degrees each year, less than 10 percent are Black, according to Department of Education statistics compiled by DataUSA. In 2017, the last year with data available, precisely 1 percent of jazz-degree grads were Black women.

“The education is the anchor,” the saxophonist J.D. Allen, 47, said in a recent interview. “We should be questioning our education system. Is it working? Is there a pipeline into the university for indigenous Black Americans to play their music, and learn their music? I don’t think that exists.”

Over the past five or 10 years, a number of musicians have helped pull jazz back into the cultural conversation, usually with message-driven music. It’s no coincidence that, like Mr. Lamar’s colleagues in Leimert Park, virtually all of them come from strong city scenes and learned much of what they know outside of school.

MUSIQUE et RAPPORTS SOCIAUX Merlin_131605937_a0c73b5f-434d-4caa-98f6-3b8ece62e806-superJumbo
The flutist Nicole Mitchell took over the jazz studies program at the University of Pittsburgh last year. “The music is about community,” she said.
Credit...Emily Berl for The New York Times


That’s noticeable in the calypso futurism of the London saxophonist Shabaka Hutchings, and in the surrealist suites of the Chicago-based flutist Nicole Mitchell and her Black Earth Ensemble. The markings of outsiderism are all over Georgia Anne Muldrow’s new album with her Jyoti project, “Mama You Can Bet,” full of dusty, sample-based jazz collages, recorded alone in her Los Angeles studio.

Raised by musicians in Leimert Park, Ms. Muldrow remembers feeling immediately affronted when she enrolled in the New School’s jazz program. “I was like, ‘What are you trying to teach people?’ I was the worst student of all time,” Ms. Muldrow said in an interview, laughing as she remembered that she hadn’t lasted a full year. “At the center of the teaching would always be the idea that jazz is not about race. And it absolutely is. It was absolutely about where people weren’t allowed to go, which made them travel in their music.”

Inspired in part by the Black, Indigenous and people of color (BIPOC) theater artists who this summer published a 29-page list of demands for their industry, and by the female and nonbinary musicians who formed the We Have Voice collective, Mr. Allen and a number of other musicians recently began holding Zoom meetings. The group, which includes artists on three continents, has titled itself the We Insist! Collective in a reference to the rebel music of Max Roach, Abbey Lincoln and Oscar Brown Jr.; late last month it released a manifesto and charter listing 10 demands for the schools and other institutions that compose jazz’s mainstream economy.

MUSIQUE et RAPPORTS SOCIAUX Merlin_156474114_7f713eab-00d0-424f-9eea-cee05f5f55de-superJumbo
"Is there a Pipeline into the university for indigenous Black Americans to play their music, and learn their music?”[/i] said J.D. Allen. “I don’t think that exists.”
Credit...Calla Kessler/The New York Times


Educational institutions must commit to revamping their curriculums around an anti-racist understanding, the collective wrote. A Black Public Arts Fund must be created to help increase the representation of African-American students in jazz programs. And educational institutions should work in partnership with “grass-roots local community organizations,” recognizing where the music has historically grown.

“The story of jazz is that of the pursuit of Black liberation, and that liberation can only happen through the dismantling of racism and patriarchy,” the manifesto reads.

Black musicians have built institutions since before the word “jazz” was even used. In 1910, James Reese Europe organized the Clef Club, effectively a union and booking agency for Black musicians in New York with its own large ensemble. But as white audiences fell in love with the music too, white entrepreneurs stepped in to handle the record labels, the publishing companies and the best-paying clubs.

The civil rights movement progressed and white liberal audiences recognized jazz musicians to be some of the country’s great artistic leaders, but they rarely treated those musicians as the scholars and thought-leaders that they were. White journalists, historians and broadcasters reserved that job for themselves.

At the midway point of the 1960s, after releasing his masterpiece, “A Love Supreme,” John Coltrane started a large ensemble with deeply spiritual intentions; he was abdicating the throne as jazz’s mainstream hero, and moving beyond many critics’ comprehension. That same year, a collective of musicians in Chicago formed the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians [AACM], supporting each other in creating new music and educating young people on the South Side. Months earlier, in a series of concerts known as the October Revolution in Jazz, musicians in New York had seized the gears of concert presentation, breaking with the clubs.

“I think the music is rising, in my estimation. It’s rising into something else. And so we’ll have to find this kind of place to be played in,”
Coltrane said at the time, calling for musicians to lead the way through “self-help.”

Somehow, it was in this moment that jazz programs began to spring up in academia, declaring the music’s history basically complete and assembling rigid curriculums based on bebop theory.

When the saxophonist and former Coltrane collaborator Archie Shepp was offered a job at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, in 1969, he hoped to teach the music as he was playing it: in conversation with African diasporic culture, in collaboration with theater artists and dancers, in spaces designed around the ethics of the music itself.

“I quickly learned that that was not too feasible, and mine was a point of view that was not welcomed,” Mr. Shepp, 83, said in an interview. He proposed setting up a program in African-American music within the music department, but was shut down; he landed in African-American studies instead. “The idea of Black music input or some nonwhite element being integrated into the academic experience was immediately rejected,” he said.

Mr. Shepp was one of the various cutting-edge musicians who were invited to teach at the university level around this time, but never fully embraced by music departments. “They were not willing to tolerate an Archie Shepp or a Max Roach, a Sun Ra or a Cecil Taylor,” the historian Robin D.G. Kelley said in an interview. “They kicked them out and said, let’s open the doors to ‘professionals’” — primarily white instructors who weren’t top-tier public performers.

MUSIQUE et RAPPORTS SOCIAUX Merlin_147075756_f16b1a96-cbfd-4034-868c-353adc79baf5-superJumbo
Jason Moran tells his students to bear in mind that they should always be in tension with the institutions they seek to change.
Credit...Richard Termine for The New York Times


Combined with the resegregation of public education and the defunding of arts programs in many cities, the effects of academicization have been profound, and ironic. Jazz got a crucial nudge into the academy from Wynton Marsalis and his fellow young neo-traditionalists, who were guarding against what they saw as the corruptions of fusion and free jazz. But even the music made by the ace students in academic programs nowadays rarely upholds the qualities Mr. Marsalis meant to protect: the swing rhythm at the music’s core; a clear commitment to the blues; focus on lyricism.

When the esteemed drummer Billy Hart, now 79, took his first university teaching job in the 1990s, he got the sense that the academy was finally ready to hire real practitioners. “It became some kind of fad,” he said dryly in an interview. “They decided that the students would be better suited if they had somebody that had experience.”

Naledi Masilo, a jazz undergrad at the New England Conservatory and the president of its Black Student Union, said that with the events of this summer, she and other Black students felt called to speak up.

“Until the recent uprising and Black consciousness on all of these school campuses, there weren’t many conversations had on campus on a deep level about what role Blackness plays in this music,” Ms. Masilo said. “It was especially shocking to me in this jazz program, where there’s only three Black students and three Black faculty. There was a disconnect — how are you teaching this music without giving any real influence to the people and the culture?” (After publication, the chair of the school’s Jazz Studies department said there are currently five students and six faculty members who identify as Black.)

The students made three immediate demands, calling for action within the month. A group of N.E.C. alumni followed with a forceful letter of its own, co-signing the students’ ultimatums and adding more — including that the jazz department be renamed the department of Black American music.

Jason Moran, the MacArthur-winning pianist and multidisciplinary artist, is a professor at N.E.C., where he advises the Black Student Union. He tells his students to bear in mind that they should always be in tension with the institutions they seek to change. “An underground movement has to be underground,” he said in an interview.

In his own classroom, he rejects the notion of having a written curriculum. “What I talk about in my classes between my students and I, the kinds of conversations we have to break down about repertoire — who wrote what and why — is not on a syllabus,” he said. “You would never detect it if you searched it, because I don’t teach that way.”

Some schools are starting to approach the integration of humanities, history and artistic instruction that Mr. Shepp and others had in mind 50 years ago. One is Harvard University’s Creative Practice and Critical Inquiry doctoral program, recently founded by the pianist Vijay Iyer and driven by a mostly female faculty from a variety of global traditions. Another is the Berklee Institute for Jazz and Gender Justice, founded by the drummer Terri Lyne Carrington, who conceived of the program with activists including Angela Davis.

Ms. Mitchell, the Chicago-based flutist, took over the jazz studies program at the University of Pittsburgh last year, stepping in after the death of its prior director, Geri Allen. Founded by the saxophonist Nathan Davis in 1970 as a concession to Black student activists, Pitt’s jazz program was attractive to Ms. Mitchell because of its focus on scholarship and musicology, as well as learning the notes.

Upon arriving, she proposed that the jazz program partner with the school’s Center for African-American Poetry to open a small venue in the community engagement center that Pitt was building in a historically Black neighborhood. The administration immediately said yes.

“This will be place for local musicians to perform, for students to connect with local musicians,” Ms. Mitchell said.

“The music is about community,”
she added. “So if a student graduates and doesn’t have any connection to community, that’s a real rip-off for that student in terms of what they’re supposed to be gaining. And it’s also a rip-off for the future of the music.”

Jazz Is Built for Protests. Jon Batiste Is Taking It to the Streets.June 24, 2020

Correction: Sept. 3, 2020
An earlier version of this article included a quotation that misstated the number of students and faculty members at the New England Conservatory who identify as Black. There are now five such students and six faculty members, not three and three.

A version of this article appears in print on Sept. 6, 2020, Section AR, Page 9 of the New York edition with the headline: Is Jazz Capable of Meeting This Moment?

Florage

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