Saying it with music: a theoretical exploration of musical encoding with reference to Western art music and the songs of the Ngqoko women

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Show simple item record Jankowitz, Christo 2012-11-26T07:10:11Z 2012-11-26T07:10:11Z 2012-11-26
dc.description MA, Faculty of Humanities, University of the Witwatersrand, 2012 en
dc.description.abstract This research-report presents a theoretical exploration of musical encoding which has its basis in general semiotic theory. By examining what this reveals about the problematic and mysterious issue of music’s meaning, I argue that the most visceral and direct form of it is found in the manner in which the composer shapes a certain kind of temporal experience (erlebnis) which is engendered by the music itself. This reveals that sensations of goal-directed movement, closure, tension and release are shaped in a phenomenological way against a background of continuity that is established by metrical cyclicity and phrasal periodisation. As a result, the interpretation of certain kinds of accumulative structural effects generated by the gestural (rhythmic and melodic/harmonic) inflections of the temporal and intonational planes become meaningful in a rhetorical, affective (affekten) and topical sense. A study of Ngqoko (Xhosa) overtone-music, as a case study into African indigenous music (as opposed to the examples cited of Western art music), shows that an intensification of the relationships between pitch and rhythm that exist in speech-tone results in the formation of melody and a culturally embedded vocabulary of intonations. I argue that this resultant edifice exists in the music of most cultures and that this ultimately serves as the basis of musical encoding. Therefore musical meaning develops in ways that are completely intrinsic to music. en
dc.language.iso en en_US
dc.subject encoding en_US
dc.subject gesture theory en_US
dc.subject intonation en_US
dc.subject musical codes en_US
dc.subject music and language en_US
dc.subject overtone-singing en_US
dc.subject Ngqoko Women's Ensemble en_US
dc.subject pre-linguistic speech en_US
dc.subject rhetoric en_US
dc.subject semantics en_US
dc.subject semiotics en_US
dc.subject speech-tone en_US
dc.subject speech-tone melody en_US
dc.subject temporal theory en_US
dc.subject topical theory en_US
dc.subject Xhosa music en_US
dc.title Saying it with music: a theoretical exploration of musical encoding with reference to Western art music and the songs of the Ngqoko women en
dc.type Thesis en

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    Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of the Witwatersrand, 1972.

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