Herbert Brün was a composer of many things including electronic and computer music. His compositions were, by design, nested in his passions for designing a new society – without violence. In this article, the author attempts to address several of Brün’s concepts relevant to his desire for social change. This paper was stimulated by a panel discussion about Brün at the 2018 American Society for Cybernetics (ASC) conference “Framing a Reality and How It Matters in a Shared World.”
Herbert Brün nested his communication in what he labeled “anticommunication,” which requires a listener to generate new ways of listening. As a video ethnographer, the author had many opportunities to videotape Brün, beginning with our first encounter at the 1992 ASC Conference in Washington State. During the past several decades, the author has composed a variety of movies in which the video footage of Brün and others that the author associates with cybernetics is used. Excerpts from many of these movies are embedded in the links located in the references section of this paper.
Brün’s cybernetic formulations for designing social transformations explored in this paper include his ideas on floating hierarchies, anticommunication, his notions on a circularity of needs, peace as a need, articulating desires, composing as an element of daily life, and the retardation of decay.
It is the author’s desire that this paper encourages the reader to explore some of Herbert Brün’s formulations for designing social change and transformations.
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