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Music and ConsciousnessPhilosophical, Psychological, and Cultural Perspectives$
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David Clarke and Eric Clarke

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199553792

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199553792.001.0001

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Public consciousness, political conscience, and memory in Latin American nueva canción

Public consciousness, political conscience, and memory in Latin American nueva canción

(p.327) Chapter 19 Public consciousness, political conscience, and memory in Latin American nueva canción
Music and Consciousness

Richard Elliott

Oxford University Press

The nueva canción, or ‘new song’, movements that emerged in Latin America in the 1960s and 1970s, and whose beginnings are normally associated with the Chilean Violeta Parra (1917–67) and the Argentinean Atahualpa Yupanqui (Héctor Roberto Chavero 1908–92), have been subject to a significant body of scholarly attention. This chapter uses the impact of nueva canción to explore some of the ways in which consciousness might be thought of as applying to groups as much as individuals. The chapter starts with a discussion of the public nature of consciousness and how one might address consciousness (of any kind) epistemologically, whether through the brain sciences, psychology, psychoanalysis, or philosophy. This section is followed by an interpretation of the kinds of consciousness involved in the social and political world, paying attention to the historical and cultural iterations of consciousness. Discussion of these modalities inevitably highlights the gaps between them, but it is not the purpose of this chapter to attempt to bridge those gaps. Rather, it suggests, via reference to the work of Slavoj Žižek, that we should allow these types of inquiry to resonate with each other. Having set out a general and theoretical contribution to consciousness studies, the chapter then proceeds to a set of considerations more clearly located in a specific, ongoing cultural moment, that of the nueva canción.

Keywords:   nueva canción movement, Latin America, consciousness, Slavoj Žižek

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