Saturday, August 30, 2008


I finally finished reading The Pickwick Papers. Interestingly, it is in some ways the same plot as Bleak House, but written as a comedy rather than a tragedy. In any case, I am ready to watch our movie of it now.

Lately I've been thinking:
1. Politics stink.
2. Life is political.
3. Therefore...

Also, here is where I really wish I had a readership, because I would like to take a poll.

Many people say that music is "The Universal Language" and that, through music, life's deepest (and not so deep) emotions are expressed in ways that transcend the spoken word. They say that people from any language in the world can communicate through music. Joy, excitement, sadness, anger, peace--these emotional responses are implicit in different types of music.

At the same time, when someone doesn't like someone else's music (particularly when traditional people don't like the messages they perceive as being portrayed through contemporary music) the people whose music has been criticized say, "It doesn't matter what the music sounds like--what matters is the words, and the words are great, so you should accept our music."

Is this true?

Is music a "universal language" that communicates things in and of itself by the form it takes? Or is music an arbitrary vehicle, where any style can be combined with any words to successfully and appropriately convey any message?

Which is it?

1 comment:

Shannon said...

CLASSICAL music is the universal language.

Clearly no one really understands this, so the stupid arguments about music with words commence. Those arguments do not make any sense because if music is the universal language, it should not have words in a language that is less-than-universal.