Guattari, Consistency and the Musical Assemblage

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The concept of the assemblage is one with great interest for music studies. While a number of authors have previously considered the Deleuze-Guattarian assemblage in relation to a variety of musical repertoires and genres, this paper will focuses instead on a more fundamental theoretical question. Considering a musical or a mixed media work as a Deleuze-Guattarian assemblage entails recognising that its ‘interest’ or ‘success’ is in some way the product of its consistency in the sense that it constitutes a successful, viable, meeting place of elements from these milieu, of these heterogeneous forces. We might then ask – what exactly do we mean when we speak of the consistency of a musical or mixed media assemblage? Acknowledging that most of the work that has been done in this area has relied principally on the joint theorisations of Deleuze and Guattari, this paper for the most part traces the concept of consistency as it is formulated in multiple places in Guattari’s writings. This is undertaken in the conviction that Guattari’s various theorisations offer us interesting and productive ways of thinking the consistency of musical compositions and events. The paper concludes with some general remarks on the fluid nature of consistency in musical composition from the turn to atonality to the contemporary situation.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationLa Deleuziana
Subtitle of host publicationRhythm, chaos and nonpulsed man. Towards a chaosmotic philosophy
EditorsObsolete Capitalism, Stefano Oliva
Place of PublicationRoma
PublisherAssociazione Culturale Rizosfera
Publication statusPublished - 10 Dec 2019


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