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1951 __ « Making music together : a study in social relationship »
Alfred Schütz (aka Alfred Schutz) (1899-1959)
Comment : Schutz, who did not believe that the problem of intersubjectivity could be addressed adequately within the transcendental sphere, applauded Sartre's rejection of of Husserl's transcendental approach to intersubjectivity; however, Sartre's emphasis on the other as a center of activity reflected a continuing Husserlian influence. The main problem, though, with Sartre's doctrine was that its starting point in a mutual looking, by which each subject reduces the other to an object, precluded any possibility of a relationship between the I-subject and other-subject. Further, Schutz wondered how Sartre would know that the other's body was given to him in the same way that his body was to the other if the other's subjectivity escaped his “I.” Moreover, Schutz acknowledged that the other's interests might not coincide with his own, but he failed to see how this fact entailed that either the other or he reduce each other to a utensil. Instead, he pointed to the “mutual tuning-in” to be found in making music together and in language as proof that subjects interact as “co-performing subjectivities” and that mutual interaction in freedom better describes intersubjectivity than Sartre's practical solipsism. Schütz, himself a trained pianist and widely read musicologist, integrated his phenomenology with his understanding of music. Music, differing from language in being non-representative, lends itself to phenomenological analysis in the meaning it carries beyond its mere physical nature as sound waves and in its character as an ideal object that must be constituted through its unfolding stages, i.e., polythetically. Further music is bound to inner temporality, and its themes, even though their note sequences are the same, vary according to context, require reflection for their recognition, and emerge through an interplay between musical elements and the listener's attention and interest. Schutz found music instructive in regard to social relationships insofar as, prior to any communication, parties to musical performances establish a non-linguistic, non-conceptual “mutual tuning in relationship.” This “tuning-in,” this sharing of another's flux of experience in inner time already described in his Phenomenology, is very clearly exhibited whenever a listener to a musical performance participates in quasi-simultaneity in the composer's stream of consciousness or when co-performers orient themselves to each other, the composer, and the audience. Hence, Schutz disagreed with Maurice Halbwachs who posited musical notation as the basis of social relationships between performers, when in fact it is merely a technical device accidental to the their relationship. (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)
French translated excerpt : « A travers cette re-création du processus musical, l’interprète prend part au courant de conscience du compositeur aussi bien que de l’auditeur. De ce fait il aide ce dernier à s’immerger dans l’articulation particulière du flux du temps interne qui est le sens propre du morceau de musique considéré. Que l’interprète et l’auditeur partagent entre eux un présent vivant dans une relation de face-à-face ou qu’ils ne partagent, par l’interposition de procédés mécaniques comme le disque, qu’une quasi-simultanéité de leur courant de conscience, importe peu. Ce dernier cas renvoie toujours au premier. La différence qui existe entre les deux démontre seulement que la relation entre l’interprète et le public est sujette à des variations d’intensité, d’intimité et d’anonymat. On comprend cela très bien si l’on imagine un auditoire constitué d’une seule personne, d’un petit groupe de personnes dans un lieu privé, d’une foule remplissant une grande salle de concert ou des auditeurs entièrement inconnus d’une exécution radiophonique ou d’un disque vendu dans le commerce. Dans toutes ces circonstances, l’interprète et l’auditeur se syntonisent l’un sur l’autre. [...] Par conséquent, chaque action de chaque interprète s’oriente non seulement selon la pensée du compositeur et sa relation au public mais aussi, de façon réciproque, selon les expériences dans les temps externe et interne des autres interprètes. […] Tout musicien de chambre sait à quel point une disposition qui les empêche de se voir peut être dérangeante.une étude de la relation sociale). »
Source : Schütz, Alfred (1932), “Der sinnhafte Aufbau der sozialen Welt: Eine Einleitung in die verstehenden Soziologie”, Vienna: Springer (also in 1960) and Frankfurt: Suhrkamp, 1974; English translation: “The Phenomenology of the Social World”, trans. G.Walsh and F. Lehnert, Evanston: Northwestern University Press, 1967.
Source : Schütz, Alfred (1962), “Collected Papers I: The Problem of Social Reality”, ed. Maurice Natanson, The Hague: Martinus Nijhoff.
Source : Schütz, Alfred (1964), “Collected Papers II: Studies in Social Theory”, ed. Arvid Brodersen, The Hague: Martinus Nijhoff.
Source : Schütz, Alfred (1966), “Collected Papers III: Studies in Phenomenological Philosophy”, ed. I. Schutz, The Hague: Martinus Nijhoff.
Source : Schütz, Alfred (1970), “On Phenomenology and Social Relations: Selected Writings”, ed. H.Wagner, Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
Source : Schütz, Alfred (1951), “Faire de la musique ensemble — une étude de la relation sociale”, In Écrits sur la musique 1924-1956, Paris: ed. Musica Falsa M.F., Collection “Répercussions”, 2007.
Urls : http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/schutz (last visited ) http://www.waseda.jp/Schutz/AlfredEng.htm (last visited )

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