In her most recent book, The Tone of Our Times (MIT Press, 2014), Frances Dyson develops a broad-ranging analysis of tonicity to argue for the (re) coupling of “cents and sense, eco and echo.” [p.1] Put another way, Dyson foregrounds economic and environmental concerns to deliver a relational account of how resonance (“with its attributes of sympathy, empathy, and common understanding – is reduced to echo: the shallow repetition of the loudest voice”) and dissonance “sound” under late capitalism. (p.2)
In the video linked below, Dyson presents a paper around the subject of the fourth chapter, “Disaffected Voices,” at the Pacific Centre for Technology and Culture.
“Listening,” Nermin Saybaşılı suggests, is a positively “spatial practice.” The notion of space recognized in and through aural experience developed by Saybaşılı, however, abides by anything but a cogent geographic teleology. Rather, it “[involves] the mapping of the invisible, the temporal, the detachable, the connectible, the reversible and the modifiable.”1 Listening to what she terms the magnetic, an audiovisual concept developed in her article “The Magnetic Remanences: Voice and Sound in Digital Art and Media” (2014), is to become attentive to space as it emerges and is mobilized in a particular way – one which has to do with the creativity and active energy of people animated in temporally and spatially unfolding events. For Saybaşılı, such is the audible materiality of political resistance.
For her talk “Magnetic Istanbul,” Saybaşılı will be operationalizing the notion of the magnetic by tuning in to “Sounds of Resistance,” a series of ethnographic sound assemblages produced by musician and composer Erdem Helvacıoğlu during the Occupy Gezi demonstrations across Turkey in the summer of 2013. Helvacıoğlu has previously composed works based on field recordings collected around Istanbul in A Walk Through The Bazaar (2003) and performed improvised electro-acoustic projects exploring the ambient spatiality of sound. See below for a few excerpts from his numerous projects.
Nermin Saybaşılı, “The Magnetic Remanences: Voice and Sound in Digital Art and Media,” in Uncommon Grounds: New Media and Critical Practice in the Middle East and North Africa, ed. by Anthony Downey (New York: Palgrave MacMillan, 2014), 201.
A lexicon for projects addressing the public sphere:
As each of the resulting projects and texts of the participants offer ideas and terminologies which themselves have long tendrils, this lexicon will offer a repository for those terms to be usefully unpacked and expanded upon.
I am unsure if it should be alphabetical or in true blog tradition temporally structured. My inclination is, time of entry marks time of reception for the author, in both a useful and poetic way intertwined so will begin with this idea.
The name for the park, Ubuntu, is not the name of a person or corporation as is so common in the naming of so called public spaces, but the name of an idea, even perhaps a worldview, shared throughout the African continent and central to the construction of a commons. “Ubuntu asserts that society, not a transcendent being, gives human beings their humanity.”
“ ‘A person is a person through other people’ strikes an affirmation of one’s humanity through recognition of an ‘other’ in his or her uniqueness and difference. It is a demand for a creative intersubjective formation in which the ‘other’ becomes a mirror (but only a mirror) for my subjectivity. This idealism suggests to us that humanity is not embedded in my person solely as an individual; my humanity is co-substantively bestowed upon the other and me. Humanity is a quality we owe to each other. We create each other and need to sustain this otherness creation. And if we belong to each other, we participate in our creations: we are because you are, and since you are, definitely I am. The ‘I am’ is not a rigid subject, but a dynamic self-constitution dependent on this otherness creation of relation and distance”.
Michael Onyebuchi Eze, Intellectual History in Contemporary South Africa, pp. 190–191
This suggests the necessity of a public sphere in the comprehension of another being. This does not preclude that we share a common sphere but acknowledges that even that difference will provide one’s sense of being.