Listening Outside of Time

Exarchos, Dimitris. 2015. Listening Outside of Time. In: M. Solomos, ed. Xenakis. La musique électroacoustique. L'harmattan. [Book Section]

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Abstract or Description

This article is concerned with an opening between music and philosophy, discussing the ideas of Iannis Xenakis and Jean Luc Nancy. As early as 1963 Xenakis presented the first elements of what was going to become an extended study of musical time, both in mathematical and phenomenological terms. His compositional investigation of outside-time structures intended to provide the foundations of a General Harmony, one that allows us to “distinguish structures, architectures, and sound organisms from their temporal manifestations”. Xenakis drew heavily on the ideas of Parmenides, fascinated by his materialism, and developed a thinking towards a musical ontology. Considering the notion of sound as materiality, we can explore the connection between Xenakis' thinking of temporality and Nancy's study of listening. Both engaged with a quasiphenomenology in their questioning and employed independent but similar approaches. Rather than attempting a dialectical synthesis, this article hopes to allow for some space of resonance for the sensibilities that open up in the work of the two thinkers.

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Book Section

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© Editions l’Harmattan. Full text is used with publisher's permission.

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Date Deposited:

15 Dec 2015 20:32

Last Modified:

29 Apr 2020 16:14


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