open access publication

Article, 2023

Writing and Flamenco: Phenomenological Investigations

In: Qualitative Studies, ISSN 1903-7031, Volume 8, 1, Pages 23-57, 10.7146/qs.v8i1.136778

Contributors (1)

Walther, Bo Kampmann (0000-0003-0600-1779) [1]


  1. [1] University of Southern Denmark
  2. [NORA names: SDU University of Southern Denmark; University; Denmark; Europe, EU; Nordic; OECD]


This article asks how the art of music may contribute to the understanding of writing as a phenomenological act. More specifically, I will introduce parts of the vocabulary, theory, and practice of flamenco to investigate the musicality and notably rhythmic qualities of the handwritten, personal signature. The aim is to demonstrate how the introduction of flamenco per se to the qualitative field of writing studies may open a way of thinking of writing as an expressed as well as expressive musical practice. Besides analyzing in detail the flamenco traits of the personal signature the article also scrutinizes the signature-as-music through the phenomenological philosophies of Merleau-Ponty and Derrida. Ultimately the article demonstrates how writing can itself be theorized off the beaten track, following the untraditional clue of guitar play in the flamenco tradition. The portrait that the article paints of writing is thus itself to be considered off the beaten track qua unconventional, unorthodox and, perhaps for some, controversial.


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