Tuesday, July 17, 2012

#16 Tyler Bennett: Counter-Hegemonic Discourse Practice and Post-World Electronic Music

23.05.2012 café Nälg (Rüütli 8, Tartu)

Counter-hegemonic discourse practice consists in the destabilization of entrenched ideological superstructures with the aim of opening space in contemporary thought for subjugated knowledges. Hegemony as the monopolization of possible cultural mobility in thought forms and practices (or dominant discourse) is grounded in the thought of Antonio Gramsci. Counter-hegemonic practices are those which achieve autonomy from within dominant discourses by upsetting those discourses. Dominant discourses are upset in a variety of different ways, but for our purposes, art-as-deautomatization of sign relations serves as the exemplar of counter-hegemonic practice. This functionality of art is grounded in the archaeological discourse method of Michel Foucault.
The synthetic model of counter-hegemonic discourse practice is applied to the work of Grey Filastine’s new musical production Loot. The model construes Filastine’s work as employing deautomatization at three nested levels: that of venue, genre, and the politico-economic. Disruptions at the first two levels feed into and crystallize disruption at the third level such that the work cannot be tied to particular political movements. The post-Marxian theoretical descriptive lens avoids the vulgar Marxist trap of attributing economic determinism to the work, while maintaining labor and currency relations as prominent factors in the constitution of hegemony. It shows how Filastine’s work opens discourse at the more fundamental semiotic level, such that new sign relations proliferate in the space of the music, the trajectory and configuration of which remain undetermined.

Here is a video of Filastine: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DXLED5HuI8o