Re: Quick guide to postmodernism and toroidal klein bottles

Subject: Re: Quick guide to postmodernism and toroidal klein bottles
From: Kevin Austin (
Date: Sun Oct 02 2005 - 21:07:13 EDT

Do you mean Boulez or Babbitt, or both? Or Berg?

At 19:22 -0400 2005/10/02, Dennis Bathory-Kitsz wrote:
>At 06:35 PM 10/2/05 -0700, Eliot Handelman wrote:
> >It was an article of faith with 12-toners

>But I find this comment...
> >In fact I find that to be a rather orwellian view of music -- get
>the rat cage on someone and they'll come out whistling "2+2=5".
>...more frightening than you apparently do the idea that someone might
>actually have been able to fall in love with the beauty 12-tone music.

Perhaps it is partly a function of the precision and (pitch-based
depth) of an individual's hearing. I read the above as a proposition
that somehow "twelve-tone music" exists in some way such as
"tonality" exists.

For me, tonality is a "structural process", and is about
relationships, and the perception / mapping / interpretation of these
relationships. Sounds a bit psychoanalytical, but in post-modernism,
the cause is the effect hidden inside itself.

In my study of music, I started to develop a 'pitch mandala' --


In Tibetan Buddhism, a mandala is an imaginary palace that is
contemplated during meditation. Each object in the palace has
significance , representing some aspect of wisdom or reminding the
meditator of some guiding principle. Tradition dictates the shapes,
sizes and colors of these objects. There are many different mandalas,
each with different lessons to teach.


Each piece (or movement, or section) of a piece is conceived as a
meditation on the relationships of the pitch-structures. The mandala
could be at once 'circle of fifths', chromatic, mixed diatonic,
toroidal or perhaps like multiply intersected klein bottles.

Sometimes large sections of the mandala were 'voided' (notably in
middle-period Varese), sometimes, sinuous and snake-like (north
Indian / Afghani raga), sometimes in multi-spectral coliision (Ives
Fourth Symphony, 2nd movement), sometimes like the explosions of
myriads of tiny points of light growing ever more forceful (Anhalt
Electronic Composition No 3), on occasion getting lost (Beethoven
Eighth, Second movement), at time slip-sliding (Schubert's chromatic
obfuscation and sliding); open ended, closed, spiral, collapsing and
breathing a last breath (Mahler 10 and Berg Violin Concerto), open
static pushing against my face (Copland Quiet City), and let me stay
away from Aus den sieben tagen.

The ear-drum vibrates, does the mind possess the power to dance and
make it real?

I'm not asking you to hear the way I hear, but I would ask that you
accept that what I hear is what I hear.



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