Monday, August 27, 2007

Make it new

Borrowing a bit from linguistics, there are basically two ways of creating novelty: the first is to create new, never-before-uttered expressions that are, nevertheless, entirely competent expressions within the received language, its lexicon, and its rules; the second is to create expressions which are, under the terms of of the received language, non-competent, if not impossible. The choice is between saying something which simply has not been said and heard before and saying something which was heretofore impossible to say or hear. The histories of repertoire in music, art, poetry, etc. are marked by a certain oscillation between the two.

2 comments:

Steve Hicken said...

This strikes me as a powerful and trenchant observation. Would you care to expand and/or provide examples?

ComposerBastard said...

This is wonderful! I think I will reblog this.

Where did you find this in linguistics?