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Monday Feb 9th – Listening: A Tension, An Intention and an Attention

February 3, 2009

Monday February 9th 7-9pm
62 Fieldgate St.,
Whitechapel E1 1ES


Lead by Lucia Farinati and Richard Crow

In mapping out different meanings on the notion of “listening” and playing a series of audio fragments including inaugural speeches, rants, nonsense, disembodied voices, and ‘silence’ –  this session aims to bring into earshot the act of listening in itself: a tension, an intention and an attention. 
The main questions that we would like to raise and discuss are:
How is listening related to a collective becoming and/or group formations? And what is the space we are creating through the “living voice”? And what is its political dimension?
A possible departure point (as a kind of provocation) will be Jean-Luc Nancy’s conclusion that:
“The subject of the listening or the subject who is listening (but also the one who is “ subject to listening” in the sense that one can be “subject to” unease, an ailment, or a crisis) is not a phenomenological subject. This means that he is not a philosophical subject, and, finally, he is perhaps no subject at all, except as the place of resonance, of its infinite tension and rebound, the amplitude of sonorous deployment and the slightness of its simultaneous redeployment-by which a voice is modulated in which the singular of a cry, a call, or a song vibrates by retreating from it (a “voice”: we have to understand what sounds from a human throat without being language, which emerges from an animal gullet or from any kind of instrument, even from the wind in the branches: the rustling toward which we strain or lend an ear).” Jean-Luc Nancy, Listening, 2007. New York: Fordham University Press, pgs 21-22

In preparation for the session, we would like to circulate the following texts (for full texts see temp text links on the blog)
Jean-Luc Nancy, (trans by Charlotte Mandell), Listening, New York: Fordham University Press, 2007 pgs 21-22
Mladen Dolar, A Voice and Nothing More, Cambridge, Mass: The MIT Press, 2006, pgs 104-124


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