ARTICULATING CELTICITY

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					ARTICULATING CELTICITY




            Finding an Irish Voice
                         Daragh O’Reilly
                   University of Sheffield
                        17 October 2007
PRESENTATION STRUCTURE

   Popular music context
   Metaphors for community
   Archaeology of ‘tribe’ - Maffesoli
   A Celtic musical ‘tribe’
     New Model Army
 Implications
  ROCK BAND AS TRIBE, BRAND
  COMMUNITY OR SUBCULTURAL
  GROUP?

 Conceptual proliferation
   Consumer Tribes (Cova, Kozinets, Shankar,
    2007)
   Brand Communities (Muniz and O’Guinn,
    2001)
   Subcultures / Post-subcultures (Bennett and
    Kahn, 2004)
MAFFESOLI, 1988/1996:6
Social                                                                  Sociality

Mechanical structure                          Complex or organic structure

(Modernity)                                                 (Post-modernity)

Political-economic organization                                          Masses

                                  versus
Individuals                                                             Persons
(function)                                                                (role)


Contractual groups                                            Affectual tribes


         Cultural, productive, religious, sexual, ideological domains
MAFFESOLI BOOKS
MAFFESOLI BOOKS




1988 French   1996 English
  Version       Version
MAFFESOLI BOOKS




1988 French    1996 English
  Version        Version



              Satan Arousing the Rebel Angels
                                William Blake
MAFFESOLI‟s BOOKS




                    2004
READING MAFFESOLI
 Reception in MCS
 Reception in popular music
NEO TRIBALISM
 P.75 – neo-tribalism … refuses to identify with any
  political project whatsoever, to subscribe to any sort
  of finality … [its] sole raison d’etre is a preoccupation
  with the collective present.
 P.76 – in contrast to the stability induced by classical
  tribalism, neo-tribalism is characterized by fluidity,
  occasional gatherings and dispersal. Thus we can
  describe the street scene of modern megalopolises:
  the amateurs of jogging, punk or retro fashions,
  preppies and street performers invite us on a
  travelling road show.
 P. 11 – The rational era is built on the principle of
  individuation and of separation, whereas the
  empathetic period is marked by the lack of
  differentiation, the ‘loss’ in a collective subject: in
  other words, what I shall call neo-tribalism.
NEO TRIBALISM
 P. 40 - A new (and evolving trend) can be found in
  the growth of small groups and existential networks.
  This represents a sort of tribalism which is based at
  the same time on the spirit of religion (re-ligare) and
  on localism (proxemics, nature).
 139 – the constitution of micro-groups, of the tribes
  which intersperse spatially, arises as a result of a
  feeling of BELONGNG, as a function of a specific
  ETHIC and within the framework of a
  communications NETWORK … these three ideas can
  be summarized by speaking of a ‘multitude of
  villages’ which intersect, oppose each other, help
  each other, all the while remaining themselves.
 140 - The tribes [have] varied lifespans according to
  the degree of investment of the protagonists
KINDS OF TRIBES
 Networks of solidarity (72)
 Communion of saints (73)
 Electronic mail, sexual networks, various
  solidarities including sporting and musical
  gatherings are so many signs of an ethos in
  gestation. Such trends are the framework of
  this new spirit of the times which we call
  sociality. (73)
 Youth groups, affinity associations, small-
  scale industrial enterprises (75)
 Small community group (94)
MAFESOLI ON TRIBALISM
   The affectual nebula
   Undirected being-together
   The religious model
   Elective sociality
   The law of secrecy
TRIBALISM 1 –
The Affectual Nebula
 Experiencing the other is the basis of
  community
 The logic of the network and the affect
  which serves as its vector are essentially
  relativist (88)
 P. 36 – the feeling or passion which,
  contrary to conventional wisdom, constitutes
  the essential ingredient of all social
  aggregations
TRIBALISM 2 –
UNDIRECTED BEING TOGETEHR
 P. 81 – I believe that the BEING-
  TOGETEHR is a basic given. Before
  any other determination or
  qualification, there is this vital
  spontaneity that guarantees a culture
  its own PUISSANCE and solidity
TRIBALISM 3 – THER
‘RELIGIOUS MODEL’
 P. 82 - The use of the religious metaphor can then be
  compared to a laser beam allowing the most complete
  reading of the very heart of a given structure.
 P. 85 – That which has been called the ‘sect’ type can be
  seen as an alternative to the purely rational governing of
  the institution. Regularly returning to the fore, this
  alternative accentuates the role of feeling in social life,
  which will aid the action of proximity and the welcoming
  aspect of that which is nascent.
 P. 21 – I am adopting the perspective of Durkheim and
  his followers, who always placed the greatest weight on
  the sacredness of social relationships
RELIGIOSITY
 P.77 this term should be seen in the most elemental
  light, that of RELIANCE
 78 – there is a link between the emotional and
  religiosity
 38 – Social Divine –the aggregate force which is the
  basis of any society or association
 41 – demotheism – the people as god, or the social
  divine
 Keeping warm together
 43- There has always been a heavy religious
  dimensions to revolutionary phenomena
TRIBALISM 4 – ELECTIVE
SOCIALITY
 P. 86 – We are currently witness to the
  development of what I shall call an
  ELECTIVE SOCIALITY. This mechanism has
  certainly always existed, but, as far as
  modernity is concerned for example, it was
  tempered by the political corrective that
  brought compromise and long-term finality
  into the picture to supersede particular
  interests and localism.
TRIBALISM 5 – The LAW OF
SECRECY
 P. 90 - Protective mechanism with
  respect to the outside world
 92 – the secret society allows for
  resistance
 37 – [secret] behaviour … is the basis
  of social perdurability … allows us to
  measure the vitality of a social group
PUISSANCE VS POWER
 P. 92 – Whereas power tends to encourage
  centralization specialization and the
  establishment of a universal society and
  knowledge, the secret society is always fond
  on the margins; is secular, decentralized,
  without the baggage of dogmatic and
  intangible doctrines.
 P. 1 – puissance* - * Tr Note: the term
  ‘puissance in French conveys the idea of the
  inherent energy and vital force of the
  people, as opposed to the institutions of
  ‘power’ (‘pouvoir’)
3.4 CULTURAL STUDIES: - THE
CIRCUIT OF CULTURE

                    representation




   regulation                            identity




      consumption                    production



                                                    Hall et al., 1997
PRODUCTION AND CONSUMPTION OF ROCK BAND
CULTURE
                              ‘Content’


           Intended/        MEANINGS                   Elaborated/
          elaborated                                    Intended
           meanings      identity, hedonic,             meanings
                        utilitarian, political,
                          spiritual, social,
                        musical, economic


       CULTURE OF                                      CULTURE OF
      PRODUCTION                                      CONSUMPTION

          people                                             people
         practices                                          practices
          places                                             places


                               TEXTS
                            music, lyrics,
                       artwork, merchandise,
                         dress, appearance,
   Encoding/              articles, reviews ,                 Decoding/
   decoding                   DVD, CD,                        encoding
                              gigs, web       Structure/
                                              performance
        PRODUCTION AND CONSUMPTION OF ROCK BAND
        CULTURE
                                              ‘Content’


                           Intended/        MEANINGS                   Elaborated/
                          elaborated                                    Intended
Creativity:                meanings      identity, hedonic,             meanings
- Originating                           utilitarian, political,
- Adapting                                spiritual, social,
- Sampling                              musical, economic                                 acquiring
Rehearsing
Touring                                                                                   collecting
Performing                                                                                owning
Sourcing (A&R)
                       CULTURE OF                                      CULTURE OF         possessing
Music and Video       PRODUCTION                                      CONSUMPTION         divesting
Production:                                                                               discoursing
- Recording               people                                             people       sharing
                                                                                          listening
- Mixing/Editing         practices                                          practices     watching
- Mastering               places                                             places       attending
Manufacturing                                                                             rituals
Distribution                                                                              dancing
Promotion                                                                                 singing
                                               TEXTS
- Image
- Artwork                                   music, lyrics,
- Plugging                             artwork, merchandise,
- Advertising                            dress, appearance,
- Publicity        Encoding/              articles, reviews ,                 Decoding/
                   decoding                   DVD, CD,                        encoding
                                              gigs, web       Structure/
                                                              performance
GROUP IDENTITIES IN THE NMA-FAN
RELATIONSHIP




             RSC

    Crew
                               ‘Militia’
                    Band


Collabo-   JS+F
rators
            Mana-     Former               Other Fans
             ger     Members




                                       = THE NMA ART FIRM?
  NMA AESTHETICS, i.e. CULTURAL ‘TEXTS’ AND CIRCUITS

Phase 1   Phase 2        Phase 3       Phase 4                           Phase 5

                                                                         GIGS
                                       WEB-SITE                          Stage design
                                                                         Lighting
                                       Newsletters
                                                                         Instruments
                                       Tour




                                                       News
                                                                         Equipment
                                       Record News
                         CLOTHING                                        Sound mix
                                       News Archive
                         MERCHANDISE                                     Movement
                                       Talk
                                                                         Setlist
 SONGS    COVER ART/     T-shirts




                                                       Creative
                                                                         Musical Performance
          SLEEVE NOTES   Sweatshirts   Lyrics
 Music                   Hoodies       Music                             PERSONAL
          Images
 Lyrics                  Hats          Art                               APPEARANCE
          Text
 Sounds   Lyrics                                                         Jewellery




                                                       Partners
                                       Red Sky Coven
          Logo           MUSICAL       Robert Heaton                     Tattoos
 VISUAL
                         PRODUCT       Kip Keino                         Piercings
 IMAGES   Photographs
                                                                         Clothing
                         Vinyl




                                                       Trade Community
                         CD
                         Concert DVD   Noticeboard
                         Music video   Links                             MERCH BOOTH
                                       Contact
                                                                         Musical Product
                                                                         Clothing Merchandise
                                       The Shop
FAMILY
 “Ch: Give me some place that I can go
  Where I don't have to justify myself
  Swimming out alone against this tide
  Looking for family looking for tribe.”
  Family, 1987 (Sullivan)

 Maffesoli, p. 94 – the conjunction of ‘group
  preservation-solidarity-proximity’ has found
  its favoured expression in the notion of
  family, which should be taken in the sense
  of extended family
‘ONE FAMILY, ONE TRIBE’
 Heritage is a powerful tool. It can inculcate a
  sense of belonging. It can be used to include
  or exclude.
         Agyeman, 2006:16 (in Simpson, ed. 2006).
‘ONE FAMILY, ONE TRIBE’
 Touring exhibition, 2004-
 English and German public museums
 Fans involved
    Curation
    Funding advocacy
    Visitors book
 Data collection through visits, interviews,
  photography/video recording
THE MOVE TO HERITAGE
 The NMA ‘Family’
   Building community
 Sacralising Community
   Emotional kinship, sanctuary, belonging
 Re-membrance
   Remembering past times
   Re-membering oneself into the community
 Risks for the band
   A ‘heritage band’, or
   A band with heritage?
 Solving the museum’s access ‘problem’
   Government policy on broadening access
   Tapping into a pre-existing community
    (‘outsourcing’?!)
NMA – A CELTIC TRIBAL
AESTHETIC?
   Family/tribe as „divin social‟
   Musical:
     Genre: punk/folk/rock
     Influences: Northern Soul
   Emotional kinship, sanctuary, belonging
   Enduring band
   Underground band („cult‟), Band of puissance
   Urban realism and pastoral romanticism
   Spiritual, political heritage
        Diggers/Levellers/Ranters – 1600s England
        Lyrics of resistance
        Miners‟ Strike/Falklands/Newbury By-pass
          USA visa refusal (again)
            „no cultural value‟ says US Government
            Fan reaction on band web-site:
              ****ing shit! they will let the beckhams in but not
               new model army? ******s.
 Critique of Maffesoli – political, empirical, social
  form over content, psychology of individual
  3.8 INDIVIDUAL
  SUBJECTIVITY

 Of the rock artiste
   „The reluctance to address the question of
    exceptionality … is a major shortcoming in
    the sociology of art‟ (Negus and Pickering,
    2004:152)
   Exceptional talent/sensibility -> soul
 Of the fan
     Body
     Active cognition
     Emotion
     Imagination -> soul
4. FINALLY …

This presentation illustrated some
of the issues which arise when an
attempt is made to conceptualise
a „rock band‟ …

Marketing is a very long way from
being able to offer on its own a
credible account of what a rock
band is.
IMAGE CREDITS
   Arcade Fire: http://ukulelehunt.com/wp-
    content/uploads/2007/05/arcade-fire.jpg
   Slipknot:
    http://folk.uio.no/perbenn/Slipknot%20Masks.JPG
   U2: http://www.pbase.com/image/51043306.jpg
   Kiss: http://www.ampeg.com/roundsound/Gene-
    Simmons.jpg
   Pink Floyd: http://www.legogh.com/MOCpages/LEGO-Pink-
    Floyd-The-Wall-Album-Cover.jpg
   Hawkwind:
    http://www.hawkwindonline.com/images/hawkwind_onlin
    e_logo.gif
   Genesis: www.mbzponton.org/
   Peter Gabriel: http://petergabriel.com/discography/
   Gorillaz:
    http://www.villagevoice.com/blogs/statusainthood/archiv
    es/images/gorillaz.jpg
   The band has a strong visual identity based on a specific aesthetic, which is closely
    linked to its musical aesthetic. The visual identity is encoded into a wide range of texts,
    which are widely circulated and serve as an important representation system for the
    band. The band's lyrics reflect a mix of urban realism and pastoral romanticism in
    attempting to deal with contemporary political, social and existential issues. The band
    web-site functions as a vitally important link between the band and its far-flung fans.
    The key ritual in band-fan relations is the live performance, a place for gathering,
    conversation, singing, dancing, celebration, and intense hedonic experiences. The
    band's musical work takes place in a particular culture of production, and the meanings
    of its work are absorbed and circulated in the fans' consumption culture. The band has
    constructed its own notion of community, namely that of a 'family'. For the
    sustainability of the band's project, both the band and fans are dependent on each
    other. All of these elements contribute to an understanding of the complex
    representation systems surrounding the band's music, and help to explain its longevity
    (nearly thirty years). The band is involved in the marketplace, but uses a range of
    strategies to 'de-marketise' and sustain itself. For example (i) the band does a
    considerable amount of identity-work to 'de-celebritise' itself; (ii) the notion of family is
    reflected in community values and behaviours, and subsumes band and fans into a
    larger entity, thus de-centering the marketing exchange in favour of an ethic of
    sharing; (iii) the boundaries of the family are kept fluid, aiding recruitment of new fans,
    and (iv) the band resists attempts to define or categorise it musically, politically and
    subculturally.
WHY MAFFESOLI?
 Why Maffesoli – what connection does
  he have with this?
   MCS people quote him a lot
   Collective consumer identity, this venue
   Irish/Celtic ancestry?
     Worked for Ronald Reagan – roots industry
     Mother from Balinasloe
     Gaming development
WHERE DOES HE FIT IN?
   Position him
   2 articles
   How does he position himself?
   Revolutionary sociologist
   Reveries, meanderings
   Romantic?
What do MCS people say he’s saying?
  30+ refs in journal articles
  Ref in C Tribes
  Own appearance in C tribes:
    In book marketing terms (Brown, Consuming
     Books) Celeb endorsement, an anchor tenant,
     kitemark, a dab of fragrant French
     intellectualism
    Doesn’t talk about anything to do with anything
  Instances
    Name checks, quotes, deeper workings over
    Surprisingly, not in Cova (CT and the other
     papers)
  He is being enregistre, enrolled, co-opted?
   recorded, recruitment in/for a cause?
What does a close reading
suggest he is saying?
 A close reading of what text? –
  1988/1996
 Shot of the text cover
 A la recherche des idees perdues …
 What inferences may we draw from
  it?
KEY IDEAS - 1
 Individual(ism) vs person(hood) vs
  collective
 Tribe vs Mass
   Kinds of tribe, p 6 and 19 = metaphor
   Permanence of tribe – ephemera –
    Mayfly/Neolithic?
   He gives 5 key criteria of tribe -
    ideology
KEY IDEAS - 2

 Social divin (Durkheim, plus primer on soc
  anthrop)
   Communion of saints, demotheism, dionysus,
    reliance, immanent transcendence – not just
    religiosity, mystical, hope schau – not because
    they’re in a BC, sect
 Puissance vs pouvoir, 58-59, 106-7, 133-
  4, and vitalism 31-38
 Underground centrality, 31-53, ix, 159, 37,
  92, 4, 21, 58
   Secrecy
 Society and sociality 56-64
KEY IDEAS - 3
   Rituals
   Ethics, 15-20
   Identification, 72-73
   Imagination – 82-3, 137-8
   Romanticism – 144
   Always time of tribes
FINDING AN IRISH VOICE
 Is finding the right word? -> constructing?
 AN (single) or many voices?
 How is this to be inflected?
 Can it include the negative self
   An Irishman is brave handsome and generous to
    a fault and any defets in his caharcetr are entirely
    rhe result to the sad circumatncs of hso coutnry’s
    history
   Cromwel was a man of dark, gloomy and merciels
    charcter
 UNDERGROUND CENTRALITY
 The hypothesis oif the u/g centrlaity: Smetimes
  secerecy can be the way to estalblsh cointact with
  the other wihin the confines of a limted group; at the
  same time it conditions the attitude of the roup
  towad whatever external force there may be. This Ho
  is the Ho of sociliaty … the fact of sharing a habit, an
  ideology or an ideal determines the being-togtehre
  and allows the later to act as a protection against any
  imposiiton, frm whatever outsie source. As opposed
  to an imposed and external morality, the ethic of
  secrecy is both federative and EQUALIZING
 … there is an informal underground centrality that
  assures the perdurabilty of life in society
NOTHING NEW
 P.98 – these phenomena are nothing new:
  the agora of Antiquity, or clsoer to home,
  the passegiata of Italy, or the evening
  promenade in the south of France all
  present the same characteisitc, and are
  considerable sites of sociality
 P.69 – Whatever name we give these
  groupings – kinship groups family groups,
  secondary groups, per groups – there is a
  proces of tribalism at work that has always
  existed.
SOLIDARITY
 P. 93 – solidaity is not an abstraction
  or the fruit of ratioal calcualtion; it is
  an imperisou necessity which causes
  us to act with passion. It is exacting
  work, giving rise to the above-
  mentioned obstincay and ruse; for,
  without a precise goal, the people has
  only one essential objective: that of
  ensuing the long-etm survival of the
  sepciases.
 P. 27 – as an alternative to the
  principle of autonomy, … (Self-
  direciton, autopoiesis, etc.), we can
  posit a principle of allonomy, which is
  based on adjustent, accomoodation,
  on the organic union with social and
  natral alerity.
Social vs Sociality (p. 76)
 A characteristic of the spcial: the individual
  could have a FUNTION in society,
  funcitoning in a party, and association, or a
  stable group
 A characteriostic of sociality: the person
  (persona) plays ROLES, both wihin his or
  her professional activiites as well as within
  the various tribes in which the person
  participates. The costume changes as the
  person, according to personal tastes
  (sexual, culture, religious, friendship), takes
  his or her palce each day in the various
  games of the THEATRUM MUNDI.
PERDURABILITY
 P. 78 – Through one’s own death, the
  indidicual permits the perdurability of the
  sepcies
 P. 34 – ‘social perdurability’ … the ability of
  the masses to resist … The recognitionof an
  irrepressible vitlaism may go handin glove
  woth this … this vitalism has formed an
  integral part of the depth psychlogy so
  centrsl to the tweniteh centr
SELF-DEPRECATION
 P.77 – I have no wish to place my
  sociological revereies in comeptitin
  with the speciailsts.
 P. 86 – let us rather continue our
  meanderings …
 P. 89 – we have rambled on about so
  much
IMPLICATIONS OF THESE
READINGS?
 Always time of tribes
 Some fit with BC and some fit with
  tribes
 But some of his stuff is not getting
  across
 When you look at it in the round,
  what do you get?
ARTICULATING CELTICITY
 How do people do it?
 Produciton and consumption of a
  culural idenity
 CoC model celtic cross
 Circuit of signifiers
TRIBALISM 6 – MASSES AND
LIFESTYLES
 96 - The ‘tribes’ we are considering may
  have a goal, may have finality; but this is
  not essential; what is important is the
  energy expended on constituting the group
  AS SUCH.
 97 – although the tribe is the guarantee of
  solidarity, it also represents the possibility of
  control; it can also be the cause of village
  racism and ostracism
ROCK AESTHETICS
TENSION WITHIN GROUPS
 P. 89 – For its part, postmodenrity
  has ended to favour within
  megalopolises both the withdrawal
  into the group as wel as adeepending
  of relationships within these groups,
  gien that this deepening is in no way
  synonynmous with unanimism, since
  conflicet also has a role to play in
  them.
UNDERGROUND PUISSANCE
 Vitalism
 Social Divine
 Aloofness of the people
   Refusal to eb part of a structure
 63 – Power can and must deal with
  the management of life; puissance
  must assume the mantle of survival
SACRALISING
THE PRODUCTION AND CONSUMPTION
OF POPULAR MUSIC




                                 Daragh O’Reilly
                               University of Sheffield
                                  Kathy Doherty
                         Sheffield Hallam University
                            Elizabeth Carnegie
                               University of Sheffield
                               Gretchen Larsen
                              University of Bradford
TOPICS
   Ongoing Research Project
   The Band
   Band-side Cultural ‘Texts’ and Circuits
   Artefacts and Art
   A ‘Move to Heritage’
   Sites of Social Interaction
THE BAND – NEW MODEL ARMY
BAND-SIDE CULTURAL ‘TEXTS’ AND CIRCUITS
 Phase 1   Phase 2        Phase 3       Phase 4                           Phase 5

                                                                          GIGS
                                        WEB-SITE                          Stage design
                                                                          Lighting
                                        Newsletters
                                                                          Instruments
                                        Tour




                                                        News
                                                                          Equipment
                                        Record News
                          CLOTHING                                        Sound mix
                                        News Archive
                          MERCHANDISE                                     Movement
                                        Talk
                                                                          Setlist
  SONGS    COVER ART/     T-shirts




                                                        Creative
                                                                          Musical Performance
           SLEEVE NOTES   Sweatshirts   Lyrics
  Music                   Hoodies       Music                             PERSONAL
           Images
  Lyrics                  Hats          Art                               APPEARANCE
           Text
  Sounds   Lyrics                                                         Jewellery




                                                        Partners
                                        Red Sky Coven
           Logo           MUSICAL       Robert Heaton                     Tattoos
  VISUAL
                          PRODUCT       Kip Keino                         Piercings
  IMAGES   Photographs
                                                                          Clothing
                          Vinyl




                                                        Trade Community
                          CD
                          Concert DVD   Noticeboard
                          Music video   Links                             MERCH BOOTH
                                        Contact
                                                                          Musical Product
                                                                          Clothing Merchandise
                                        The Shop
MAFFESOLI ON TRIBES –
IDEES „PERDUES‟?

 Perdurability
 Underground
 „Puissance‟ opposed to „pouvoir‟
 „Divin social‟, or „immanent
  transcendence‟
 Tribes can be producers, not just
  consumers

				
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