Ritual As Negotiated Space

Posted January 30, 2014 @ 2:13pm | by Tripp

Moodle is calling my name. There is much to do. Then there’s the library. I need to return and renew some books. It’s frustrating to know that I can’t just hold on to ‘em until, you know, I’m done. Whatever “done” is. Alas. This is the way of a fallen world. You do have to return and renew your library books.

I am thinking today about virtuosity and repetition. Yesterday in a seminar I am attending on social-critical theory and music, I brought up the subject of ritual and competing ontologies as well as unspoken (and thus competing) teleologies. I was shut down. Boom. Full stop. “Ritual doesn’t function that way.”

So, I’m stumped and curious about what I’m missing. Reading Grimes, Bell, etc has fairly well convinced me that ritual is a negotiated space (ala Bourdieu) in and by which people articulate some shared sentiment. That it is repeated (like a rock concert when the artists are on tour) does not mean it is always the same or that negotiation stops at some point. No, ritual (read: Liturgy) is a space for negotiation and is the cultural product of a people participating in a certain kind of negotiation.

But, O how the music folk balked at this.

Very interesting.

I got some work to do. 

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