Tobias  Pontara Author of Evaluating Organization Development

Tobias Pontara

University of Gothenburg

Tobias Pontara is Professor in Musicology at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden. Pontara’s research lies at the intersection between cultural studies, philosophical aesthetics, and film music studies. In Andrei Tarkovsky's Sounding Cinema (Routledge 2020) Pontara adds a new dimension to our understanding and appreciation of the work of Russian director Andrei Tarkovsky (1932–1986) through an exploration of the presence of music and sound in his films.

Subjects: Film and Video, Music


Tobias Pontara is Professor in Musicology at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden. His research interests lie chiefly in film music, the philosophy of music and the cultural study of music. Among the journals in which he has published are Philosophical Studies, 19th-century music, Music, Sound and the Moving Image, International review of the aesthetics and sociology of music and Music and the Moving Image. Pontara is the author of Andrei Tarkovsky’s Sounding Cinema: Music and Meaning from Solaris to The Sacrifice (Routledge 2020).


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 Featured Title - Andrei Tarkovsky's Sounding Cinema--Pontara - 1st Edition book cover


Swedish Journal of Music Research

Listening to technologically mediated music in film Representations of social and solitary listening in Swedish cinema 1930–70

Published: Jan 01, 2018 by Swedish Journal of Music Research
Authors: Tobias Pontara
Subjects: Film and Video, Music

Cinematic representations of musical listening may be understood as reflecting changing listening practices in society at large. Proceeding from this assumption the article aims to show how sound reproduction technologies such as the radio and the gramophone were represented in relation to both social and solitary forms of listening in Swedish cinema between 1930 and 1970.

Swedish Journal of Music Research

Domestic space, music technology and the emergence of solitary listening Tracing the roots of solipsistic sound culture in the digital age

Published: Jan 12, 2017 by Swedish Journal of Music Research
Authors: Tobias Pontara & Ulrik Volgsten
Subjects: History, Music

In this article we discuss three important preconditions for solitary listening as it developed in the course of the twentieth century: (1) the emergence of the modern living room; (2) the arrival of new technologies for sound reproduction; and (3) a continuously growing individualism in society at large.

Dynamics of Mediatization (Palgrave Macmillan)

Musicalization and Mediatization

Published: Jan 11, 2017 by Dynamics of Mediatization (Palgrave Macmillan)
Authors: Tobias Pontara
Subjects: Music, Media and Cultural Studies, Communication Studies

Musicalization can be defined as a long-term historical process characterized by an ever-increasing presence of music in everyday life, a process that is intimately connected with changing technological conditions and with transformations in how music is mediated and communicated as well as with broader socio-cultural processes at work in a given historical period.

Music and The Moving Image 9.2 (2016)

Interpretation and Underscoring: Modest Constructivism and the Issue of Nondiegetic versus Intradiegetic Music in Film

Published: Jan 06, 2016 by Music and The Moving Image 9.2 (2016)
Authors: Tobias Pontara
Subjects: Film and Video, Music, Philosophy

According to modest constructivism, the spectator’s freedom to imagi- natively invent the meanings of films is limited to cases where a film is genuinely indeterminate. This essay argues that the relation between standard musical un- derscoring and a film’s story world (or diegesis) is seldom indeterminate in this way. It also argues, however, that the diegetic status of much underscoring can be imaginatively constructed in radically different ways. Thus, modest constructivism is mistaken.

IRASM 46 (2015) 1: 3-41

Interpretation, Imputation, Plausibility: Towards a Theoretical Model for Musical Hermeneutics

Published: Jan 09, 2015 by IRASM 46 (2015) 1: 3-41
Authors: Tobias Pontara
Subjects: Music, Philosophy

This article presents a theoretical model that accounts for the nature and methodology of critical interpretation as it is practiced in modern musical hermeneutics.

Philosophical Studies

Methodology in aesthetics: the case of musical expressivity

Published: Jan 07, 2011 by Philosophical Studies
Authors: Erkki Huovinen & Tobias Pontara
Subjects: Philosophy

In this paper, we examine selected theories of musical expressivity presented in the form of biconditional statements, analyzing the possibilities for constructing thought experiments against them. We argue that the evaluation of these theories will centrally rely on inferential, non-immediate access to our subjective musical experiences.