In defense of beauty: A role for the aesthetic in music therapy theory part I: The development of aesthetic theory in music therapy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The role of aesthetic considerations in music therapy theory has an interesting history. Its examination sheds some light on fundamental areas of tension in music therapy as a health–promoting discipline that takes place through an art form. This first part of a two–part article examines the origins of thinking on this topic (Gaston, 1964; 1968) and provides a brief overview of its development from a variety of perspectives (Kenny 2006; Salas, 1990; Aigen, 1995; Summer, 1992; Lee, 2003). The use of aesthetic theory is placed within the context of philosophical thinking on the nature of aesthetic experience in general. In a second part of the article, critiques of aesthetic thinking will be presented and responded to. The author's stance is that aesthetic experience can be a highly relevant aspect of music therapy practice in certain applications, a belief that rests on the more fundamental notion that musical experiences in clinical contexts can be continuous with nonclinical musical experiences.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)112-128
Number of pages17
JournalNordic Journal of Music Therapy
Volume16
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2007

Keywords

  • Aesthetics
  • Beauty
  • Music therapy theory
  • Phihsophical inquiry

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Phychiatric Mental Health
  • Anthropology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Complementary and alternative medicine

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