Akoumena

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  • Title: Akoumena: A Natural Philosophy of Hearing
  • Author(s): Paolo Palmieri
  • Publisher: Common Ground Research Networks
  • Collection: Common Ground Research Networks
  • Series: Interdisciplinary Social Sciences
  • Keywords: Akoumena, phenomenology, hearing, philosophy, history of science, Husserl, music, sound
  • Year: 2018
  • ISBN (hbk): 978-1-61229-988-4
  • ISBN (pbk): 978-1-61229-989-1
  • ISBN (pdf): 978-1-61229-990-7
  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.18848/978-1-61229-990-7/CGP
  • Citation: Palmieri, Paolo. 2018. Akoumena: A Natural Philosophy of Hearing. Champaign, IL: Common Ground Research Networks. doi:10.18848/978-1-61229-990-7/CGP.
  • Extent: 184 pages

Abstract

The inspiration for this book originated in a startling comment made by Hermann von Helmholtz more than a century ago. It concerns natural philosophy and musical aesthetics. Helmholtz thought that natural philosophy serves musical aesthetics. This raises a paradox concerning sound, philosophy, and human hearing. Could we envision a philosophy of hearing and sound that overcomes Western prejudices concerning music, noise, and tonality? Akoumena takes a critical stance towards the reductionist tendencies within the natural sciences. It suggests that the mechanistic-materialistic mode of inquiry that has risen to prominence in the sciences is a blind alley for philosophy and that phenomenology has a powerful role to play in reconfiguring the intellectual landscape of the twenty-first century. The book aims at integrating diverse styles of inquiry into a philosophy of hearing and sound that harkens back to premodern philosophical systems and archaic modes of experience.