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"Just Vibrations is without question a groundbreaking book, bothaccessible to a wide readership (including undergraduate students) andtheoretically nuanced. Cheng elegantly balances clarity of explanationwith a depth and breadth of scholarship that encourage the reader todive more deeply into the theoretical underpinnings of his readings andinterpretative approaches. All this is accomplished through a writing stylethat is eminently readable, borderline poetic at times." - Andrew Dell'Antonio, the University of Texas at AustinReseña del editor:
Modern academic criticism bursts with what Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick oncetermed paranoid readings-interpretative feats that aim to prove a point,persuade an audience, and subtly denigrate anyone who disagrees.Driven by strategies of negation and suspicion, such rhetoric tendsto drown out softer-spoken reparative efforts, which forego forcefulargument in favor of ruminations on pleasure, love, sentiment, reform,care, and accessibility. Just Vibrations: The Purpose of Sounding Good calls for a time-out inour serious games of critical exchange. Charting the divergent paths ofparanoid and reparative affects through illness narratives, academicwork, queer life, noise pollution, sonic torture, and other touchy subjects,William Cheng exposes a host of stubborn norms in our daily orientationstoward scholarship, self, and sound. How we choose to think aboutthe perpetration and tolerance of critical and acoustic offenses mayultimately lead us down avenues of ethical ruin-or, if we choose, repair.With recourse to experimental rhetoric, interdisciplinary discretion,and the playful wisdoms of childhood, Cheng contends that reparativeattitudes toward music and musicology can serve as barometers of betterworlds.
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