Skip to main content
×
Home
    • Aa
    • Aa

On Musical Mediation: Ontology, Technology and Creativity

Abstract

This article develops a theoretical analysis of music and mediation, building on the work of Theodor Adorno, Tia DeNora and Antoine Hennion. It begins by suggesting that Lydia Goehr’s account of the work concept requires such a perspective. Drawing on Alfred Gell’s anthropology of art, the article outlines an approach to mediation that incorporates understandings of music’s social, technological and temporal dimensions. It suggests that music’s mediations have taken a number of historical forms, which cohere into assemblages, and that we should be alert to shifts in the dominant forms of musical assemblage. In the latter part of the article, these tools are used to conceptualize changing forms of musical creativity that emerged over the twentieth century. A comparison is made between the work concept and jazz and improvised electronic musics. Three contemporary digital music experiments are discussed in detail, demonstrating the concepts of the provisional work and of social, distributed and relayed creativity. Throughout, key motifs are mediation, creativity, and the negotiation of difference.

    • Send article to Kindle

      To send this article to your Kindle, first ensure no-reply@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about sending to your Kindle.

      Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

      Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

      On Musical Mediation: Ontology, Technology and Creativity
      Available formats
      ×
      Send article to Dropbox

      To send this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your Dropbox account. Find out more about sending content to Dropbox.

      On Musical Mediation: Ontology, Technology and Creativity
      Available formats
      ×
      Send article to Google Drive

      To send this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your Google Drive account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

      On Musical Mediation: Ontology, Technology and Creativity
      Available formats
      ×
Copyright
Footnotes
Hide All
I am grateful to Simeran Gell for supporting my request to use material from Alfred Gell’s work. Gell’s figures are reproduced by permission of Oxford University Press; other images are reproduced by permission of the rights holders, as noted in the captions. I would like to thank Dhiraj Murthy and Mariam Fraser for sharing their work with me at an early stage, and Neil Robertson for useful conversations and websites. I also thank these colleagues for ideas and feedback on various drafts: Robert Adlington, Nikolaus Bacht, Andrew Barry, John Bowers, John Butt, Judith Green, Björn Heile, Eric Lewis, Charles Wiffin; and my co-members of the research group ‘Improvisation in the Performing Arts’ based at the University of California Humanities Research Institute in 2002, particularly George Lewis, Susan Foster, Simon Penny and Jason Stanyek.
Footnotes
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Twentieth-Century Music
  • ISSN: 1478-5722
  • EISSN: 1478-5730
  • URL: /core/journals/twentieth-century-music
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Metrics

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 899 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 811 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between September 2016 - 28th June 2017. This data will be updated every 24 hours.