Concert Series and Events

Welcome to the online version of Carleton College's music events publication, Music at Carleton. All events are free and open to the public unless otherwise indicated. For more information, please call (507) 222-4475.

May 7

re: Composition - Of Books and Bots

Guest speaker: Daniel Levin Becker of the French literary-mathematical collective Oulipo

Thursday, May 7th, 2015
8:00 – 9:00 pm / Weitz Cinema

Founded in Paris in 1960, the Oulipo (ouvroir de littérature potentielle, or workshop for potential literature), a collective of writers and mathematicians dedicated to exploring the generative potential of formal structures and constraints, occupies a privileged place in the landscape of what we might call "inspirationless art." But its works and experiments to date have neglected most mechanical technologies of creation, notably digital and computer-assisted literary production, to the bemusement of some and the chagrin of others. Why is this the case, and what modes of intersection — or what textures of estrangement — might we expect in the workshop's next half-century?

Daniel Levin Becker, the youngest member of the Oulipo and one of two Americans therein, will put this rift in perspective of the group's origins and goals as they have evolved to the present, using both creative examples and theoretical touchstones to survey how oulipian values react with and against the shifting import and substance of text today. Rather than a history of experimental literature, this will be a look at what oulipian thought means now, as both an avant-garde tradition and a humanistic affirmation of the mind's own proprietary technologies.

An interdisciplinary lecture series sponsored by the Carleton College Department of Music and hosted in the Weitz Center for Creativity, re:composition invites us to think synthetically at the intersection of production, technology, and society: six guest artist-scholars will share their idiosyncratic stews of apparatus, context, and creation to exemplify the uncounted ways that critical inquiry and creativity might mutually fuel one another.

Sponsored by Music. Contact: Diane Fredrickson, x4347