afternoon dust

dance & aesthetics, mostly

Tag Archives: theodor_adorno

Devil’s Advocate: Dog Kennel Hill Project and the End of Dance

Photo of Devil sculpture, Tuscany, Italy

Devil sculpture, Tuscany, photo by piettoizzo (Creative Commons)

Adorno once claimed that “to write a poem after Auschwitz is barbaric”1, an accusation that has managed to upset quite a few writers and literary experts over the years. It’s difficult to say whether Adorno was being ‘serious’ or not; at any rate, perhaps his intended target was not poetry itself but the callousness and indifference of a poetry industry that, in the face of the evidence of overwhelming suffering, simply carried on as if nothing had changed. Suffice it to say that Adorno’s challenge did not signal the End of Poetry in the West. It did, however, prompt a fair amount of soul-searching among those brave enough to claim the job description of ‘poet’, forcing them to think long and hard about what, after Auschwitz, their poems could possibly mean. Read more of this post


To listen is to shudder: on music


For a while I was beginning to wonder if I’d already grown too old for new music. Over the past few months, however, I’ve had my ears opened to a whole world of beguiling, engaging music I never knew existed. This music is often categorised under labels such as ‘microsound’, ‘modern classical’, or ‘post-ambient’, though I must admit I have no idea what any of those terms actually mean; typically it is open in its form (as opposed to the rigid verse-chorus structure of most pop music) and tends to use natural acoustic sounds that are then heavily processed, often beyond recognition.

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