Kristjan Tamm
University of Tartu, Department of Semiotics


It is difficult to speak about music that is truly own: the composer and performer are always bound with countless threads within their time, history, culture, contemporaries, predecessors, influences, traditions. On the other hand, that, which we can consider traditions, influences, predecessors, contemporaries, culture, history or time, is always formed of the creation of the very composers/authors. This is tied as familiar (own) to some network of links/relations, some name or some tradition.

Like order and chaos, black and white, good and bad, sacral and secular entail one another’s seed, so do the own and the alien contain each other, depending on the viewpoints and aims, with the potential of transforming into one another. This article relates to the complicated relations and relativity of the own and the alien in Arvo Pärt's "Credo" (1968).

Keywords: semiotics of the own and the alien, music semiotics, Arvo Pärt, «Credo».