Prof. Mitchell Akiyama, Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape and Design presents "Intrasonics, or, how animals taught me there’s no such thing as music"
Musicology, Ethnomusicology, and Theory Graduate Colloquium Series
*Rescheduled from Dec 2, 2021*
Mitchell Akiyama (Assistant Professor, Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape and Design, UTSG) presents "Intrasonics, or, how animals taught me there’s no such thing as music."
Thursday, January 27 at 3:30 pm
This event will take place on Zoom. Please email Prof. Daphne Tan at firstname.lastname@example.org or Prof. Lyndsey Copeland at email@example.com for the webinar link.
Description: We say that birds sing, but does this mean that they make or experience music? While it’s well established that some birds do sometimes sing for no apparently “useful” reason, such as mating or asserting territorial claims, these excessive vocal exercises are characterized in the scientific literature as pleasurable for birds on account of the dopamine that’s released. They don’t sing to praise a god or express the pain of a breakup; they sing to maintain homeostasis in their dopamine and opioid reward cycles. What happens, then, when humans make music?
My provocation is that the very notion of music is one conceptual tool among many that we have developed to uphold the idea that humans expression is special because it transcends simple neurochemistry. I want to ask, what happens when we let go of the idea of music and focus more broadly on taking profligate pleasure in sound, organized or not?
METh Graduate Colloquium Schedule, Winter 2022:
- Thursday, January 27, 3:30 pm, Zoom: Mitchell Akiyama (Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape and Design, UTSG)
- Thursday, February 17, 3:30 pm, hybrid format: Robert Hasegawa (McGill University)
- Thursday, March 3, 3:30 pm, hybrid format: Nina Sun Eidsheim (University of California Los Angeles)
- Monday, March 28, 4:00 pm, Zoom: Anna Schultz (University of Chicago).
This talk is co-hosted with the Anne Tanenbaum Centre for Jewish Studies; please note the different day and time.