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Rationalizing Culture – IRCAM, Boulez, and the Institutionalization of the Musical Avant-Garde - California Scholarship Online
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Rationalizing Culture: IRCAM, Boulez, and the Institutionalization of the Musical Avant-Garde

Georgina Born


This book presents an ethnography of a powerful western cultural organization, the renowned Institut de Recherche et de Coordination Acoustique/Musique (IRCAM) in Paris. As a year-long participant-observer, the author studied the social and cultural economy of an institution for the research and production of avant-garde and computer music. The text gives a unique portrait of IRCAM's composers, computer scientists, technicians, and secretaries, interrogating the effects of the cultural philosophy of the controversial avant-garde composer, Pierre Boulez, who directed the institute until 1992. I ... More

Keywords: IRCAM, Paris, computer music, composers, avant-garde composer, Pierre Boulez, postmodernism, high culture, popular culture

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 1995 Print ISBN-13: 9780520202160
Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2012 DOI:10.1525/california/9780520202160.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Georgina Born, author