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Blues - Philosophy for Everyone


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Table of Contents

Foreword x Bruce Iglauer It Goes a Little Something Like This?: An Introduction to Blues ? Philosophy for Everyone xvi Jesse R. Steinberg and Abrol Fairweather Acknowledgments xxviii PART 1 HOW BLUE IS BLUE? THE METAPHYSICS OF THE BLUES 1 1 Talkin' To Myself Again: A Dialogue on the Evolution of the Blues 3 Joel Rudinow 2 Reclaiming the Aura: B. B. King in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction 16 Ken Ueno 3 Twelve-Bar Zombies: Wittgensteinian Reflections on the Blues 25 Wade Fox and Richard Greene 4 The Blues as Cultural Expression 38 Philip Jenkins PART 2 THE SKY IS CRYING: EMOTION, UPHEAVAL, AND THE BLUES 49 5 The Artistic Transformation of Trauma, Loss, and Adversity in the Blues 51 Alan M. Steinberg, Robert S. Pynoos, and Robert Abramovitz 6 Sadness as Beauty: Why it Feels So Good to Feel So Blue 66 David C. Drake 7 Anguished Art: Coming Through the Dark to the Light the Hard Way 75 Ben Flanagan and Owen Flanagan 8 Blues and Catharsis 84 Roopen Majithia PART 3 IF IT WEREN?T FOR BAD LUCK, I WOULDN'T HAVE NO LUCK AT ALL: BLUES AND THE HUMAN CONDITION 95 9 Why Can't We be Satisfied?: Blues is Knowin? How to Cope 97 Brian Domino 10 Doubt and the Human Condition: Nobody Loves Me but my Momma? and She Might be Jivin' Too 111 Jesse R. Steinberg 11 Blues and Emotional Trauma: Blues as Musical Therapy 121 Robert D. Stolorow and Benjamin A. Stolorow 12 Suffering, Spirituality, and Sensuality: Religion and the Blues 131 Joseph J. Lynch 13 Worrying the Line: Blues as Story, Song, and Prayer 142 Kimberly R. Connor PART 4 THE BLUE LIGHT WAS MY BABY AND THE RED LIGHT WAS MY MIND: RELIGION AND GENDER IN THE BLUES 153 14 Lady Sings the Blues: A Woman?s Perspective on Authenticity 155 Meghan Winsby 15 Even White Folks Get the Blues 167 Douglas Langston and Nathaniel Langston 16 Distributive History: Did Whites Rip-Off the Blues? 176 Michael Neumann 17 Whose Blues?: Class, Race, and Gender in American Vernacular Music 191 Ron Bombardi Philosophical Blues Songs 203 Notes on Contributors 205

About the Author

Jesse R. Steinberg is an assistant professor of philosophyand the director of the Environmental Studies Program at theUniversity of Pittsburgh at Bradford. He has been a visitingprofessor at Victoria University in New Zealand, at the Universityof California at Riverside, and at the University of IllinoisUrbana-Champaign. He has published a number of articles ontopics including philosophy of mind, metaphysics, philosophy ofreligion, and ethics. Abrol Fairweather is an instructor at San FranciscoState University and the University of San Francisco. He has published in the area of Virtue Epistemology andsustains interests in philosophy of mind, metaphysics, andphilosophy of language. He has contributed to popular culturevolumes on Facebook and Dexter. The guitar, vocals, and lyrics ofLightnin' Hopkins and Mississippi John Hurt are majorinfluences. Serieseditor: Fritz Allhoff is an associate professor in the philosophydepartment at Western Michigan University, as well as a seniorresearch fellow at the Australian National University's Centre forApplied Philosophy and Public Ethics. In addition to editingthe Philosophy for Everyone series, he is also the volumeeditor or co-editor for several titles, including Wine PHIlosophy (Wiley-Blackwell, 2007), Whiskey PHIlosophy (with Marcus P. Adams, Wiley, 2009), and Food& Philosophy (with Dave Monroe, Wiley-Blackwell,2007). His academic research interests engage variousfacets of applied ethics, ethical theory, and the history andphilosophy of science.


Blues Philosophy for Everyone providesilluminating essays from this philosophy of the blues. Itbrings together intriguing insights into the connection between theblues and philosophy that will appeal to music lovers andphilosophers alike. (, 1February 2012) Blues? Philosophy? Ludwig Wittgenstein as the HoochieKoochie man? Why not? There's a crossover: blues andphilosophy both exist to make sense of it all, to find meaning inthe vicissitudes of living. Leading the fly out of the fly bottledoesn't have to end up as a treatise, it can also end up as a song. As this book forms one the Philosophy for Everyone series,with titles such as Cannabis -- What Were We Just TalkingAbout? or Dating -- Flirting With Big Ideas, we knowthat it is not going to be too po-faced in its approach to puttingthis popular art form under the philosophical lens. And if theother books in this series are as good as this one, then I'll besearching them out, too ... The writing here is of a high order andthe essays yield insights galore about the blues in its social,historical and cultural contexts and its personal and universalappeal. (Metapsychology Online Reviews, 27April 2012)

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