Sunday, November 1, 2015

"The deepest significance of a relatively unchanging biological human condition is probably to be found in some of the basic material processes of the making of art: in the significance of rhythms in music and dance and language, or of shapes and colours in sculpture and painting. Because art is always made, there can of course be no reduction of works of this kind to biological conditions. But equally, where these fundamental physical conditions and processes are in question, there can be no reduction either to simple social and historical circumstances. What matters here—and it is a very significant amendment of orthodox Marxist thinking about art—is that art work is itself, before everything, a material process; and that, although differentially, the material process of the production of art includes certain biological processes, especially those relating to body movements and to the voice, which are not a mere substratum but are at times the most powerful elements of the work." - Raymond Williams, "Problems of Materialism"

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