CFP (Journal): Philosophy of Music: Special Issue of Teorema


Philosophy of music is a second-level reflection on the nature of music and our experience of it. Music is a practice fraught with meaning and value in the lives of many people and occupies an important place in our artistic culture. However, it raises philosophical questions perhaps more difficult than other artistic practices. Many philosophers, from the Pythagoreans and Plato to Wittgenstein and Adorno, have been attracted by these issues, and their doctrines are part of the history of the philosophy of music. If we limit ourselves to the major topics that have been the focus of discussion in recent decades, we can group such topics into at least six major areas: (a) issues relating to the definition of music (the difference between noises, sounds and tones, the debate between objectivism and subjectivism about musical phenomena, the opposition between pure and impure music, etc.); (b) problems relating to the ontology of music (the clash between
nominalism and idealism about the relationship between a musical work‚ and its tokens or performances‚, the controversy between fictionalism and realism, etc.); (c) questions concerning the psychology of music (how music manages to express emotions, what are the listener’s emotional responses to it, what are the criteria for assessing such responses, etc.); (d) problems regarding the semantics of music (the semiotics of musical meaning, the link between music and text, the distinction between structure and content, the controversy between representationalism and expressivism, etc.); (e) problems regarding the understanding of music (what constitutes the experience of understanding music, what skills and behavioural responses are involved in such understanding, etc.); (f) issues concerning the value of music: (what makes musical experience valuable, what connections can be established between music and mysticism, between music and ineffability, between music and silence, etc.).

Teorema invites submissions of papers on these and related topics for a special issue to be published in 2012. Articles must be written in Spanish or English and should not exceed 6,000 words. For the presentation of their articles, authors are requested to take into account the instructions available at Submissions must be suitable for blind review. Both a DOC and a PDF document must be sent to the Editor by November 15th 2011. Notification of intent to submit, including both a title and a brief summary of the content, will be greatly appreciated as it will assist with the coordination and planning of the special issue.

Submission deadline: November 15, 2011

Luis M. Valdés Villanueva at

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