We mentioned the “Heavy Metal and the Communal Experience” conference which will take place in San Juan, Puerto Rico on March 5, 2014. This conference aims to define community in metal and explore its boundaries.
As part of our ongoing exploration of academia in metal, this conference offers a topic that many of us have wondered about in the past. How does metal balance its radical individualism with its radical sense of community, and of a post-individual humanity, which sets it apart from all other genres philosophically?
Some years ago a friend mentioned how death metal unnerved her because the bands attempted to play in unison with each other or at least in complement with each other instead of trying to push the boundaries of how chaotic they could get. Like church music or higher math, metal is about order, and it imposes this through forcing twisted fragments of power chords into phrases that address each other like a dialogue in the music. This outlook could explain how metal views community.
The conference will attract a number of luminaries from the metal academic circuit, including:
- Keith Kahn-Harris
University of London, UK
- Niall William Richard Scott
University of Central Lancashire, UK
- Deena Weinstein
DePaul University, USA
- Karl Spracklen
Leeds Metropolitan University, UK
- Jeremy Wayne Wallach
Bowling Green State University, USA
- Amber Clifford
University of Central Missouri, USA
- Brian A. Hickam
Benedictine University, USA
- Cláudia Souza Nunes de Azevedo
Universidade Federal do Estado do Rio de Janeiro, BR
- Nelson Varas Díaz
Universidad de Puerto Rico, PR