THE HEAD OF ORPHEUS
Voice, Song and the Poetics of Resistance and Transformation
Are voice and song primary modes of communication? How is it that voice-work can affect us in such a powerful way? In this issue of the journal, we explore the primacy of the voice in poetry and song, seeking to understand its communicative and transformative power. Our authors explore the resurgence of the oral tradition, the origins of the poetic, the extreme reaches of vocal expression and the ways in which digital media both close off and open up new possibilities for primary vocalization. More than an academic exploration of voice, the issue speaks to us as we read it, and sometimes it even seems to sing.
And for the first time, the journal has links to audio and video presentations connected to the theme - we can look and listen as well as read.
Articles: Rishma Dunlop, "Vox Humana," Elizabeth Gordon McKim, "Ride the Poetry Bus: An Excursion Into the Oral Tradition of Song/Story/and Poem," Fides Krucker, "Chiaroscuro: The Bodhisattva in the Voice," Vivian Darroch-Lozowski, "Making Worlds: the Extended Voice Work of Richard Armstrong," Richard Armstrong, "The Irritant," Linda Wise, "Voice and Soul: The Alfred Wolfsohn/Roy Hart Legacy," Enrique Pardo, "Figuring out the Voice: Object, Subject, Project," Allucquére Rosanne Stone, "Song and Resistance," Christina Foisy, "Gloomy Sunday on a Tuesday: The Unsound Voices of Suicide re-membered Through Sound Poetics," Peter Price, "Digital Sound and the Post-Human Future"
Poetry: Norman Minnick, Rebecca Chamberlain, Shara Claire, Jeffrey Thomson, Domenico Capilongo, Alison Luterman, Stephen K. Levine, Tomas O'Leary, Vivian Darroch-Lozowski, Maxine Yalovitz-Blankenship, Kristin Briggs, Andrew Sofer, Ewan Whyte, Lamont B. Steptoe, Phil Woods, Barry Dempster, Mihku Paul, James P. Lanfestey, Frank Miller
Art Work: Jenn E. Norton, Yi Xin Tong, Nicholas Hooper, Martha Townsend, Erin Gee, Rory Dean, Faye Mullen, Michael Caines, Nicola Woods, Jennifer Chan, Audio Lodge
Featured Artist: Elise Kermani
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THE POIETICS OF ALTERITY
How can we represent the Other? How can the Other represent us? In this issue of the journal, we are looking at ways in which we may open to the Other in the arts, media and the arts therapies. Is art a vehicle for the expression of the self or does it necessarily imply transcendence toward otherness? What, if anything, is a self and how does it reach out to the Other, both the other person and the otherness of itself? Can poiesis be a basis for ethical practice or is there, as Kierkegaard thought, an insuperable gap between the aesthetic and the ethical?
Featuring articles on working with others, especially those considered radically different, through the arts, as well as articles on the political significance of the arts in Critical Theory:
“Asylums Rededicated: A Concrete Utopia,” “Anthropologists of the Mind,” “Conversations at the Edge of The Numinous,” “Encountering the Other-Self: Essential Forms and New Therapeutic Developments in Transitional Phenomena,” “Edith Turner: A Lifetime of Encountering the Other,” “Teaching Peace by Piece: Two Quilts One World,” “Contact Zone: The Ethics of Playing with “the Other”,” “Doing the Dishes, Aferim,” “Art as Counter-Thinking: Aesthetics and Revolution in the Critical Theory of the Frankfurt School,” “Sound as an Expression of Critique: Theodor W, Adorno’s Philosophy of Music,” “Art as the Experience of Alterity: Theodor W. Adorno’s Aesthetic Theory.”
Poetry by: Stephen Levine, Elizabeth Gordon McKim, Adriana Marchione, Charles Coe, Isabelle Schenkel, Thomas R. Smith, Phil Woods, James P. Lenfesty, Rebecca Chamberlain, Barbara Claire Kasselmann, Danielle Legros Georges, Margo Fuchs Knill, Sally Atkins, Alice Beecher, Anna M. Warrock, Judith Steinbergh, Shara Claire, Chris Brandt, Alison Luterman.
Artwork by: Susanne Sekula, Issa Ibrahim, John Tursi, Brent Taylor, Angela Silver, Kelly Lycan, Annie Si-Wing Tung, Jordan Bower, Jen Mann, Gisele Amantea, Olexander Wlasenko, Steve Cribbin, Paris Visone, Stephen Schofield, Juliana Pivato.
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ECOPOIESIS: Imagining the Earth
This issue of the POIESIS journal brings together writers from the fields of philosophy, media studies and the expressive arts in an effort to grasp our relationship to the environment in a more imaginative way.
Paul Virilio, writing about Grey Ecology, (“…the pollution of the self-created world”) looks at our situation through the lens of speed and the acceleration of reality, while Jason Adams applies Virilio’s concept of popular defense to an aesthetics of resistance. Thomas Zummer’s eco/sophia calls for a remediation of technics and a re-membering of the world; and for Wolfgang Schirmacher, Eco-Sophia becomes an ethics for the human being as technician, the art of living humanely.
David Abram reminds us that underlying our technologized experience is a direct sensuous relationship to the world, one which we can return to through the re-awakening of our primary oral culture in story-telling. For Wes Chester, our fundmental relationship to the world is through an aesthetic encounter which can be cultivated in a disciplined way. And Thomas Trenchard and Sally Atkins make this encounter come alive by telling us of their experiences in the woods - either at night or in the mountains.
The journal is filled with art-work and poetry that embodies the call for a new aesthetics of the natural world, featuring a lengthy excerpt from the important new work by Rishma Dunlop, The New Republic: Reading Towards Ecotopia. As Dunlop says,
for nomenclature. Hoop the names of things
to your belt. When you are empty,
eat the words, drink them.
We invite our readers to join us at the feast.
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The image has always been suspect to thought. Either it is seen as a false representation which seduces us from truth (Plato) or, at best, a superceded stage on the way to the Absolute Idea (Hegel). For the artist, however, the image is home, the land of possibility where new perspectives can be found. Where are we with the image today?
In Baudrillard’s view, the dominance of media and the emergence of hyperreality means that the classical opposition between image and real can no longer be maintained. Not only does the real vanish in a profusion of simulacra, but the “original power of the image,” its capacity to become an event of transcendence, is also obviated.
Can we find that original power again? The coming issue of POIESIS invites readers to submit papers that explore the image today - and perhaps imagine it tomorrow. Where are we with the image, and how can we find its original power again? We hope that readers will be inspired to think about this question and its implications for philosophy, art, therapy and social change.
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Amor fati: that shall henceforth be my love! I do not want to wage war against the ugly. I do not want to accuse — I do not even want to accuse those who accuse. Let looking away be my only denial! And all in all and on the whole: I want someday to be purely and simply a Yes-sayer! -Nietzsche
After several issues dedicated to trauma, suffering and terror, POIESIS takes up Nietzsche’s call for a “Yea-saying” philosophy of life. How can we find joy and enjoyment in everyday life and in the arts? Can we get beyond the media-driven conception of happiness as endless consumption and reclaim a non-ideological attitude of affirmation towards existence? What would this mean for the critique of ideology? What implications would it have for therapeutic and social change? What would be an aesthetics of praise?
We hope that readers will be willing to risk the foolishness of affirmative thinking in the face of all catastrophe and join us in saying, “Yea!”
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For beauty is nothing but the beginning of terror, which we are still just able to endure, and we are so awed because it serenely disdains to annihilate us. -Rilke
So begins the Editor’s Introduction of the latest edition of POIESIS: the annual, cutting-edge source for new research from the fields of Expressive Arts Therapy and Media & Communication. As Rilke’s quote suggests, this beautiful new issue of the journal contains an extensive feature section on beauty and terror. This section also honours Shaun McNiff, one of the founders of the field of expressive arts therapy, on the event of his 60th birthday. In addition to this special and thought-provoking section, we are also proud to publish new works from Media & Communications — Pierre Aubenque, Christopher Fynsk and John Sallis — as well as poetry by Robert Bly and others. More than any other issue to date, POIESIS VIII spans geographic distance as well as time periods, exploring the art and nature of expression in places as far-reaching as Sierra Leone, Iraq, Jerusalem, Texas, and rural Canada, and from the Deep South of the 1800s to the Woodstock era to present times. Artwork appears in full colour.
Explore POIESIS VIII
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