Naming Accumulation and Naming Invention: Strategies to Resist Existence

  • Beatrice Madiot University of Picardy Jules Verne, France, CRP-CPO (EA 7273 Amiens UPJV)
Keywords: naming, social representation, identity representation, music, mailing list


Within the framework of the theory of social representations, the use and functions of the naming in 3,764 messages of a mailing list dedicated to Creative Music are analysed in order to show that this group crystallises its existence by adopting strategies aiming at escaping from all forms of denomination. Paradoxically, this operation is carried out by means of excess of denominations. This surplus mainly takes two enumerative paths that can be combined within the same statement. In the former, authors multiply the denominations of musical genres, while in the latter, they add extra-musical and extra-aesthetic qualifiers to the generic term 'music'. The former procedure allows the authors to blur the consensual markers by cumulatively using the official and institutional names and classification of musical genres. The excessive mobilisation of discursive registers other than aesthetic ones allows them to reveal the organisation of the musical world and to reject its constraining and counter-productive aspects in terms of creation and innovation. Thus, the dismissal of the profusion of naming, and of the classification associated with it, can crystallise a social existence, or at least the claim to a social existence, through a manifest and deliberate situating on the margins of the social system.

Author Biography

Beatrice Madiot, University of Picardy Jules Verne, France, CRP-CPO (EA 7273 Amiens UPJV)

BÉATRICE MADIOT is an Associate Professor at the University of Picardie Jules Verne France, engages in studies that mobilise the theory of social representations on objects such as artistic genres, as an activity or professional practice. Her work is also oriented towards creative processes. She also makes use of qualitative methodologies. e-mail: