John Cage and Buddhist Ecopoetics: John Cage and the Performance of Nature (New Directions in Religion and Literature)

By Peter Jaeger

John Cage used to be one of the first wave of post-war American artists and intellectuals to be motivated by means of Zen Buddhism and it was once a power that led him to develop into profoundly engaged with our present ecological predicament. In John Cage and Buddhist Ecopoetics, Peter Jaeger asks: what did Buddhism suggest to Cage? and the way did his figuring out of Buddhist philosophy effect on his illustration of nature? Following Cage's personal artistic thoughts within the poem-essay shape and his use of the traditional chinese language textual content, the I Ching to form his tune and writing, this publication outlines a brand new severe language that reconfigures writing and silence.

Interrogating Cage's ‘green-Zen' within the mild of up to date psychoanalysis and cultural critique in addition to his personal later flip in the direction of anarchist politics, John Cage and Buddhist Ecopoetics offers readers with a significantly performative website for the Zen-inspired "nothing" which is living on the middle of Cage's poetics, and which so in actual fact intersects together with his ecological writing.

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Basically, this part employs psychoanalytic concept, a discourse which Cage set himself at odds with, yet which however may possibly nonetheless supply us with an invaluable ability to think again many of the mental and social positive aspects of his cultural creation. My go back to the extra politicized facets of Lacan and to post-Lacanian thought isn't really meant to restrict our event of Cage, yet to work out how psychoanalysis may possibly let us ask convinced questions on Cage, approximately his figuring out of Buddhism, approximately his politics and approximately his illustration of nature – all of which would another way stay unquestioned.

1907. the traditional version of the full mental Works. Trans. James Strachey. London: Hogarth P, 1953. —. 1901. the translation of desires. Trans. James Strachey. Hammondsworth: Penguin, 1976. Frost, Elisabeth A. ‘Leslie Scalapino. ’ American Poets considering W. W. II, sixth sequence. Ed. Joseph Conte. Dictionary of Literary Biography, Vol. 193. Detroit: Gale, 1998, 318-572-328. Gallop, Jane. interpreting Lacan. Ithaca: Cornell UP, 1985. Gann, Kyle. No Such factor as Silence: John Cage’s 4’33”. New Haven: Yale UP, 2010. Garrard, Greg.

If the tale was once tremendous brief, Cage must draw it out, but when it was once quite lengthy, he may have to talk speedily so that it will convey it in the one minute time constraint. Cage writes that he placed the tales jointly in an unplanned approach, to be able to recommend that ‘all issues – tales, incidental sounds from the surroundings, and, by means of extension, beings – are comparable’ (Silence 260). Marjorie Perloff describes how in Silence, the expository discourse of the lectures supply method, at unforeseen junctures, to the quick narratives of Cage’s types of Zen kōans (Poetics 309).

While requested via Daniel Charles approximately sound in conventional Zen tune, Cage answered that ‘Zen cultivates this flowing again in the direction of non-organization, that's, in the direction of sounds as such, for and in themselves’ (For 201). The non-organization of sounds and phrases is for Cage a microcosm of nature in her demeanour of operation, of social anarchy and of non-public liberty. His lengthy mesostic piece Anarchy (1988), for instance, makes use of quotations approximately social reforms and the names of appropriate authors as resource texts, after which matters those texts to a sequence of computer-generated likelihood operations to provide a hugely fragmentary and disjunctive piece of writing.

Composition’ then contrasts this full of life freedom with similar to a piano as a ‘closed process; / no matter if you play on it with feathers, rocks, rubber tubing, / pricey John Cage’ (366). the following, Whalen refers to Cage’s innovation of composing for a ready piano. For Tom Clark, those strains point out how Whalen’s poetic technique of ‘inspired puttering’ consistently returns to obsessive subject matters and rhythms, just like the closed procedure of a tuned piano (1). � whereas it truly is actual to claim that Whalen’s paintings frequently returns to ‘noodling or doodling as inventive method’ and that this method is ‘characteristic of his disarmingly self-deflating comedy’ (Clark 1), it sort of feels to me that this poem units up a distinction among Whalen’s good-humoured, open-ended poetics with a extra closed-off method that's ‘already there’ and located in Cage – that's, a procedure which exists ahead of the ‘nerve motion picture’ or moment-by-moment strategy of the poem’s composition.

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