The Beautiful Music of War

I love grad school.

I had a fascinating and epic conversation today with a brilliant student of music. Beginning slowly enough with a litany of obscure vocab and strange names, I soon discovered

  • Making great music is the same thing as winning wars
  • Musicology = Warfare Theory
  • Music = War

As Mark Safranski might say, we had some serious leveraging of vertical domain knowledge through horizontal concept transfer. That so many concepts — methodical warfare, super-empowerment, deconfliction, the importance of quickly cycling the OODA loop and fast transients (whether through instinct or fingertip-feeling). It was as if the young (and breath-takingly beautiful) music student was John Robb or Nellie Lide, but was expressing the exact same thoughts in music theory instead of warfare theory or marketing theory.

Over the past week

  • I have nailed down my research interest (Early Christianity as an example of asymetrical warfare)
  • Identified how different specialities of political science are able to support the thesis
  • Now have concrete examples of how every “humanity” is just the study of human struggle, except it uses different words

(And let’s not forget Larry’s comments, which bridge humanities and hard sciences.)

I love grad school.