The Philosopher's Touch: Sartre, Nietzsche, and Barthes at the Piano

Kobo ebook | January 10, 2012

byFrancois Noudelmann

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Music is a significant object of reflection for contemporary philosophers, yet little has been written on the interplay of music and thought. François Noudelmann critically engages the musicality of Barthes, Sartre and Nietzsche, all of whom were amateur piano players, giving an insightful reading of their work in light of their music. The practice of playing the piano was crucial to these philosphers, but their writing on the topic was scant, implicit, or in discordance with their philosophical oeuvre. Noudelmann reveals how the manner in which they played, the composers they explicitly and secretly adored, and the music they chose to write about is telling of these philosophers’ writing styles and thinking patterns. Noudelmann invites us to imagine the physical and theoretical practice of music as a dimension underpinning and resonating with their philosophical work proper. He thus unearths new perspectives on the philosophical trajectories of the three. Noudelmann has an elegant command of the texts under study, and understands the discursive points and concerns of philosophical and musical theorists of recent decades. He also brings to the work of Barthes, Sartre, and Nietzsche a sense of lived, embodied experience, raising the question of the relationship between philosophy and the senses, a philosopher’s life and thought.

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Music is a significant object of reflection for contemporary philosophers, yet little has been written on the interplay of music and thought. François Noudelmann critically engages the musicality of Barthes, Sartre and Nietzsche, all of whom were amateur piano players, giving an insightful reading of their work in light of their music....

François Noudelmann is professor of philosophy at l'Université Paris VIII. He has taught at The State University of New York, Stony Brook, and Johns Hopkins University, and he has served as president of the College International de Philosophie and host of France-Culture's radio program Philosophy Fridays. His publications include Sa...
Format:Kobo ebookPublished:January 10, 2012Publisher:Columbia University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0231527209

ISBN - 13:9780231527200

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Extra Content

Table of Contents

Intuition
The Off-Beat Piano
Why I Am a Great Pianist
The Piano Touches Me
Resonances

Editorial Reviews

Whether in a text that is scholarly or meditative, and whether, as Barthes put it in S/Z, a text is 'readerly' or 'writerly', music and letters never did comfortably embrace each other, for all that we need them to. Kudos to Noudelmann for offering something expertly imaginative, trying to meet that need.