Ben Watson (music writer)

Ben Watson (music writer)

Ben Watson (born 1956) is a British writer on music and culture of Marxist views, known especially for his books on Frank Zappa.

Watson is well-known for his writing in "The Wire" , as well as the author of numerous books, often entailing studies of popular culture from a Marxist perspective. Watson is a member of the British Trotskyist Socialist Workers Party; his writing combines this background together with influences from Theodor Adorno and the Frankfurt School, the Situationists and wider cultural interests including the writings of James Joyce and J.H. Prynne. His first full-length book, "Frank Zappa: The Negative Dialectics of Poodle Play" was read by Zappa shortly before his death, and is widely thought to have contributed to it. Watson calls his own field of study in this area Zappology. He is also an experimental poet and novelist; his first novel "Shit-Kicks and Dough-Balls" was published in 2003.

Watson's partner is the Marxist philosopher (and scholar of Walter Benjamin and Georg Lukács) Esther Leslie with whom he has collaborated on various works.

List of writings

*"28 sliverfish macronix out to lunch" (1992)
*"Frank Zappa: The Negative Dialectics of Poodle Play" (1995)
*"Art, Class and Cleavage: Quantulumcunque Concerning Materialist Esthetix" (1998)
*"The Complete Guide to the Music of Frank Zappa" (1998)
*"The Mad Pride: A Celebration of Mad Culture" (with Robert Deller, Esther Leslie and Ted Curtis) (2000)
*"Shit-Kicks and Dough-Balls" (2003)
*"Derek Bailey and the Story of Free Improvisation" (2004)
*"Frank Zappa: The Complete Guide to his Music" (2005)
*"Academy Zappa: Proceedings of the First International Conference of Esemplastic Zappology" (with Esther Leslie) (2005)

External links

* [ Militant Esthetix] - Ben Watson and Esther Leslie's site.
* [ Philosophy on Television] in Radical Philosophy

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