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CHAPTER 32
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12 TOWARDS A POLITICAL
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AESTHETICS OF MUSIC
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DAVID HESMONDHALGH
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20 This chapter outlines a political aesthetics of music. The aim is to produce a
21 framework that would allow for the evaluation of musical institutions,
22 processes, and developments, in terms of how music, in its various insti-
23 tutional, technological, and textual forms, might inhibit or promote human
24 flourishing. This aesthetics is “political” in a broader sense of politics than
25 that which is concerned with analysing, for example, how social movements
26 use music or whether certain musical texts reinforce or resist ideology—
27 though this is not to deny the importance of these matters, and it can include
28 them too.
29 In modern capitalist societies, music is a mode of communication and
30 culture oriented primarily towards artistic expression and experience. To
31 consider music’s ability or otherwise to enhance people’s lives requires
32 engaging with the significance of the domain of art and aesthetics in modern
33 society. I mean “art” in a broad sense: the use of skills to produce works of
34 the imagination, to invoke feelings of pleasure, beauty, shock, excitement,
35 and so on. The social value of artistic practices and experiences, like edu-
36 cation and culture more broadly, has come under attack in recent years.
37 Politicians and commentators question the value of art (see O’Connor 2006
38 for a brilliant critique of one such case) and. in the British context in which
39 I write, savage cuts in education, library, and arts funding are under way.
40 This will almost certainly have an enormous effect on musical practice. The
41 U.K. case is not untypical: in many societies, music and other forms of
42 culture and knowledge are increasingly prone to being treated as activities

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1 inferior to the accumulation of profit, or the pursuit of personal and cor-


2 porate advantage. Artistic practices and experiences can, it seems, be
3 defended only on the basis of their contribution to the economy, or to some
4 kind of amelioration of social damage (Miller and Yūdice 2002).
5 In such circumstances, the artistic practices and experiences afforded by
6 music need defending in other terms—in terms of their ability to promote
7 human flourishing. However, this needs to be a critical defence, which
8 recognizes the ways in which power, history, and subjectivity interlock in the
9 highly complex and unequal societies of today. Massive inequalities persist
0 in the realm of culture, information, and knowledge, just as they do in the
11 economic sphere.
12
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14 DEFENDING ARTISTIC EXPERIENCE—AND MUSICAL EXPERIENCE
15 Where, in such circumstances, might we turn for a critical defence of
16 culture, of artistic experience, and of music? Disappointingly, much serious
17 analysis of culture has offered only occasional and limited resources in this
18 respect. There is no space to back up my point by surveying all the different
19 fields. But a brief look at one especially important set of approaches—those
20 associated with the interdisciplinary project known as cultural studies—
21 might help contextualize my approach here. Cultural studies has been highly
22 influential on the cultural study of music, the subject of this volume.
23 Cultural studies developed in the 1960s and 1970s, with the explicit
24 aim of contributing to a democratization of culture. It did so partly through
25 critical analysis of how inequality was etched into artistic and cultural
26 expression in modern societies. It also aimed to question the way that
27 humanities scholarship had been approached, and in particular the idea of
28 studying culture as the analysis of the “best which has been thought and
29 said in the world,” to quote Matthew Arnold’s Culture and Anarchy (1869).
30 Cultural studies developed important insights concerning the way in which
31 audiences contributed to meaning, and the importance of class, ethnic, and
32 gender difference in relation to culture. As much a movement across dis-
33 ciplines as a discipline in itself, cultural studies drew on the new social
34 activism of the post-countercultural period, notably feminism and anti-
35 racism, and also on longer traditions of socialism that sought to defend
36 working-class cultural experience. Post-structuralist versions claimed to
37 offer much more developed conceptions of relations between culture,
38 power, and subjectivity than “traditional” or classical Marxism. The influ-
39 ence of the Marxist political theorist Louis Althusser was important in this
40 respect, as was that of the radical psychoanalyst Jacques Lacan, and the
41 historian Michel Foucault. As these authors were translated and imported
42 into Anglophone cultural analysis (and eventually the cultural analysis of

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1 music), their work encouraged much greater engagement with the incom-
2 plete, uncertain and open nature of human subjectivity.
3 But this engagement came at a cost. The profound hostility of these
4 writers and their followers to humanism swayed many cultural studies
5 analysts towards a suspicion of categories such as aesthetics, experience, and
6 even emotion (“affect” being the preferred anti-humanist concept). Such
7 ways of thinking—which were by no means peculiar to cultural studies but
8 influenced a range of critical thought in the humanities and social sci-
9 ences—may have ended up unwittingly strengthening the hand of social
0 groups who might seek to benefit from the erosion of intellectual and artistic
11 autonomy, especially big business and its allies in the state apparatus. (Of
12 course not all cultural studies followed this route. Exceptions include Frith
13 1996; Negus and Pickering 2004; and the work of Raymond Williams.)
14 Times change, and different approaches are called for. I believe that we
15 need a much richer account of the role of culture in people’s lives, and the
16 relation of culture to people’s attempts—always uncertain, constrained and
17 uneven, often failing—to live a good life. This particular focus on experience
18 needs an account of subjectivity that understands people as emotional
19 beings, recognizing that culture has a problematic but important relation-
20 ship to this dimension of our lives. Dynamics of power, history, and
21 inequality, forefronted by the best versions of cultural studies, need inte-
22 grating with these issues.
23 We must turn to other traditions if we are to evaluate in a more rounded
24 way the role of artistic experience in modern societies, and specifically music
25 as a form of artistic experience. I have chosen to address only two here, neo-
26 Aristotelianism and pragmatism, since they raise questions of emotion and
27 experience in relation to artistic practice, questions that I find of particular
28 interest. This is necessarily abstract, and abstraction is good because it allows
29 for the identification of underlying principles. But I’ll then make the discus-
30 sion more sociologically concrete by discussing some potential relations of
31 music to human flourishing (or otherwise) in modern societies. As I do so,
32 I’ll explore in greater depth what I mean by a critical defence of music—one
33 that recognizes that the deeply scarred nature of modern societies is bound
34 to affect music.
35
36
37 MUSIC, EMOTION AND EXPERIENCE
38 One notable tradition that has been neglected for many years by those who
39 pursue the critical cultural study of music can be designated “Aristotelian.”
40 The concept of human flourishing that I have already referred to in passing
41 derives from this. The neo-Aristotelian philosopher Martha Nussbaum
42 (2003) has provided one recent attempt to explain how the experience of art

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1 might enhance human life. The context for her account is an analysis of the
2 ethical importance of emotions, against the preference for the application of
3 detached intellect apparent in much philosophy (and reflected in some
4 forms of cultural policy). Nussbaum first argues that emotions have a nar-
5 rative structure. “The understanding of any single emotion is incomplete,”
6 she writes, “unless its narrative history is grasped and studied for the light it
7 sheds on the present response” (p. 236). This suggests a central role for the
8 arts in human self-understanding, because narrative artworks of various
9 kinds (whether musical or visual or literary) “give us information about
0 these emotion-histories that we could not easily get otherwise.” (p. 236) So
11 narrative artworks are important for what they show the person who is eager
12 to understand the emotions; also because of the role they play in people’s
13 emotional lives.
14 Importantly, Nussbaum grounds her conception of emotions in a psy-
15 choanalytically-informed account of subjectivity. Rather than the bizarrely
16 nonfeeling subject to be found in the Lacanian tradition favored by much
17 post-structuralist cultural studies, she draws on object relations analysts
18 such as D. W. Winnicott (1971). For Nussbaum and Winnicott, the poten-
19 tially valuable role that artistic experience might play in people’s lives is
20 suggested by studies of infant experience of stories and of play. Storytelling
21 and narrative play cultivate the child’s sense of her own aloneness, her inner
22 world. The capacity to be alone is supported by the way in which such play
23 develops the ability to imagine the good object’s presence when the object is
24 not present, and play deepens the inner world. Narrative play can help
25 us understand the pain of others, and to see them in noninstrumental
26 ways. Children can be given a way of understanding their own sometimes
27 frightening and ambivalent psychology, so that they become interested in
28 understanding their subjectivity, rather than fleeing from it. Stories and play
29 can militate against depression and helplessness, by feeding the child’s
30 interest “in living in a world in which she is not perfect or omnipotent”
31 (237). They contribute to the struggle of love and gratitude versus ambiva-
32 lence, and of active concern against the helplessness of loss. These dynamics
33 continue into adult life—this of course is a fundamental insight of psycho-
34 analytically informed thought—and adults too benefit from narrative play.
35 How might this relate to music as a special case of cultural and aesthetic
36 experience? Rightly, in my view, Nussbaum claims that much music, in most
37 modern societies, is closely connected to emotions, or at least is ideally
38 thought to be so. But music as such doesn’t contain representational or
39 narrative structures of the sort that are the typical objects of concrete
40 emotions in life, or in other kinds of aesthetic experience such as films or
41 novels. This makes it less obvious how music itself can be about our lives.
42 Music is of course often linked to stories, in songs, operas, ballads, and so

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1 on, and, even when it isn’t, is often highly discursively mediated, by the use
2 of titles, instructions on scores, or critical discourse that seeks to interpret
3 what music means. But we still need an account of the way musical sounds
4 address emotion and feeling.
5 Nussbaum delineates (p. 272) a number of ways in which narrative fic-
6 tion, such as novels and plays, allow for emotion on the part of the reader/
7 spectator. Emotions can be felt
8
9 • towards characters, sharing emotion through identification or
0 reacting against the emotions of a character
11 • towards the sense of life embodied in the text as a whole, reacting
12 to it sympathetically or critically
13 • towards one’s own possibilities
14 • in response to coming to understand something about life or about
15 oneself.
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17 Musical artworks can play the same role, says Nussbaum, but with the emo-
18 tional material embodied in peculiarly musical forms. Music’s distinctive
19 language is one of compressed and elliptical reference to our inner lives
20 and our prospects; for Nussbaum, it is close to dreaming in this respect.
21 Our responses to music are crystallizations of general forms of emotion,
22 rather than reactions to characters, as in narrative fiction; so most musical
23 emotions, for Nussbaum, fall into the second and third of the categories
24 listed above. Nussbaum agrees with Schopenhauer that music is “well-suited
25 to express parts of the personality that lie beneath its conscious self-
26 understanding” (p. 269), bypassing habit and intellect. Music “frequently
27 has an affinity with the amorphous, archaic, and extremely powerful emo-
28 tional materials of childhood’ (ibid.). Its semiotic indefiniteness gives it a
29 superior power to engage with our emotions.
30 Using examples from Mahler, Nussbaum claims that musical works can
31 contain structures in which great pain is crystallised and which construct
32 “an implied listener who experiences that burning pain” (p. 272); or they
33 may “contain forms that embody the acceptance of the incredible remote-
34 ness of everything that is good and fine” and construct a listener who
35 experiences desolation. Or a musical work may contain forms that embody
36 the “hope of transcending the pettiness of daily human transactions.”’ Music
37 is somehow able to embody “the idea of our urgent need for and attachment
38 to things outside ourselves that we do not control” (p. 272). This capacity is
39 not natural; it is the product of complex cultural histories, and experience
40 of such emotions depends on familiarity with the conventions that allow
41 them, either through everyday experience of musical idioms or through
42 education. These emotions might be hard to explicate as they happen, and

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1 not all works invoke deep emotion—they can just be enjoyable or inter-
2 esting. But music provides its own version of the ways in which stories and
3 play potentially enhance our lives, by cultivating and enriching our inner
4 world, and by feeding processes of concern, sympathy, and engagement,
5 against helplessness and isolation.
6 Nussbaum suggests the fruitfulness of an approach that relates the value
7 of art to human well-being, emotion, and experience, and which also
8 addresses the specificity of music as part of that account. Of course, music
9 might fail much of the time to do this. Nussbaum is suggesting what music
0 can offer, how it might add to our capabilities, our prospects for living
11 different versions of a good life. It may be however that her explication is
12 centered too much on a model of a listening self that is contemplative and
13 self-analytical. This suggests that the defence of a wider range of artistic
14 experience might need to look to other sources. One potential starting point
15 is the American educationalist and pragmatist philosopher John Dewey,
16 who, in the helpful gloss of Richard Shusterman, argues that art’s special
17 function and value lie “not in any specialized particular end but in satisfying
18 the live creature in a more global way, by serving a variety of ends, and above
19 all by enhancing our immediate experience which invigorates and vitalizes
20 us, thus aiding our achievement of whatever further ends we pursue”
21 (Shusterman 2000, 9). Art is thus at once instrumentally valuable and a
22 satisfying end in itself. Art “keeps alive the power to experience the common
23 world in its fullness,” in Dewey’s words ([1934] 1980, 138), and provides the
24 means to make our lives more meaningful and tolerable through the
25 introduction of a “satisfying sense of unity” into experience. This emphasis
26 on experience in no way precludes the importance of meaning and reflec-
27 tion, and does not rely on a naive romantic notion of immediacy as the basis
28 of art’s power. Dewey confusingly merged artistic and aesthetic experience,
29 but to see the experience of music, stories, and visual art as ordinary, as part
30 of the flow of life, and as continuous with other forms of aesthetic expe-
31 rience (such as finding a person or a landscape deeply attractive) fits well
32 with Raymond Williams’s statements about the simultaneous ordinariness
33 and extraordinariness of culture and creativity (for example in Williams
34 1965). It makes room for forms of artistic expression and entertainment that
35 are less about contemplation, and more about energetic kinesthesis, and
36 (thoughtful) engagement of the body. Shusterman (2000, 184) gives the
37 example of how funk embodies an aesthetic, which he sees as derived from
38 Africa, of “vigorously active and communally impassioned engagement.”
39 Shusterman is rather too inclined to dismiss other experiences of music as
40 “dispassionate, judgemental remoteness” in his efforts to defend popular art;
41 and not all dancing experiences are as communal as he suggests. Simon
42 Frith’s sociologically informed aesthetic of popular music (1996) may get

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1 closer to what goes on in music which is focused more on rhythm than on


2 harmony and melody. A steady tempo and an interestingly patterned beat,
3 observes Frith, enable listeners to respond actively and to experience music
4 “as a bodily as well as a mental matter” (p. 144). This is often as much about
5 order and control as going wild—a pronounced steady beat often underlies
6 dance music. The point though is that a whole range of popular musics offer
7 deeply pleasurable, feelingful, and absorbing experiences—and Frith (who
8 is not a pragmatist in the philosophical sense), Dewey and Shusterman help
9 us to see the value of this combination of mental and bodily experiences
0 through music.
11 Nussbaum and Dewey/Shusterman come from very different philo-
12 sophical, intellectual, and political traditions, but their Aristotelian and
13 pragmatist ethics can be mutually complementary. They suggest ways in
14 which artistic experience, including musical experience, might be valued
15 in modern societies. Now, however, I want to elaborate on the suggestion
16 I made earlier, that the kind of defence of such experience I have in mind
17 needs to be a critical defence, so that we avoid producing the kind of pious,
18 ethnocentric, and complacent celebrations that now seem to characterize
19 some earlier writing about culture and music, and which post-structuralism
20 and cultural studies did such important work in helping us to demystify.
21
22
23 MUSIC AND HUMAN FLOURISHING: FIVE DIMENSIONS
24 How might a more critical orientation towards culture, and towards music,
25 balance the claims we might want to make for its emancipatory potential to
26 allow human flourishing? To put this another way, how might we incor-
27 porate into our analysis the recognition that the world is severely marred by
28 injustice, inequality, alienation, and oppression, and that music is unlikely
29 to remain unaffected by these broader social dynamics? Perhaps the most
30 durable body of critical work on culture and music in modernity is that of
31 Theodor Adorno. No one applied a historical understanding of power and
32 subjectivity so relentlessly to musical culture as a whole than did Adorno.
33 For Adorno ([1932] 2002, 393), music could contribute to bettering the
34 world only through “the coded language of suffering.” From the perspective
35 sketched here, Adorno’s work is limited by its excessive austerity, his idealist
36 requirement that art should aspire to extremely demanding levels of auton-
37 omy and dialectic, by his failure to recognize adequately the ambivalence
38 in both “high culture” and “popular culture,” and, linked to all this, his
39 seeming contempt for everyday cultural experience in modern societies.
40 A significant challenge for critical analysts, then, is to produce a historically
41 informed but non-Adornian account of music-related subjectivity (see
42 Hesmondhalgh 2008). This section of the chapter merely sketches such an

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1 account, based on Nussbaum, Shusterman, and others. I try to make the


2 discussion more sociological, more concrete, by listing just five ways in
3 which music might enhance well-being or flourishing in modern societies.
4 At the same time I address some aspects of music–society relations which
5 prevent music from fulfilling that potential.
6 First, music can heighten people’s awareness of continuity and development
7 in life. It seems powerfully linked to memory, perhaps because it combines
8 different ways of remembering: the cognitive, the emotional, and the bodily-
9 sensory (van Dijck 2006). It allows us to remember things that happened,
0 how we felt, and what it’s like to move, dance, and feel to a certain set of
11 sounds, rhythms, textures. This ability for music to get stuck in our minds
12 has surely been enhanced by recording technologies: most of us hear a lot
13 more music now than most of our ancestors, and we are likely to hear some
14 of it repeatedly, often in great bursts of repetition over a few weeks when a
15 recording is initially a hit, when it’s played regularly in public spaces. This
16 tends to happen to people more when they’re young, and so, for older
17 people, music can be powerfully evocative of loss as well as continuity.
18 Nostalgia is neither good nor bad in itself, as it has the potential to make us
19 aware of things that we might be justified in regretting (Boym 2002). But it
20 can involve a negatively sentimental relationship to our past: for example,
21 older people might project onto their youth the feeling that things were
22 better then, when in fact life involved a mixture of different emotions and
23 processes, and may often have been extremely difficult. Attachment to the
24 familiar records of the past can crowd out the inclination and desire to add
25 new experiences to people’s lives, inhibiting development and flourishing.
26 Arguably, the commodification of music has encouraged that negative sen-
27 timentality through economics and aesthetics that make it cheaper and
28 easier to invoke musical pasts than to encourage real innovation.
29 Second, music might enhance our sense of sociality and community,
30 because of its great potential for providing shared experiences that are
31 corporeal, emotional, and full of potential meanings for the participants.
32 Parties and festive occasions are, for many people, unthinkable without
33 music. This sense of sociality and community can be pleasurable, moving,
34 and even joyous. Such occasions provide opportunities for the forging of
35 new friendships, and the reaffirmation of old ones. Music plays an especially
36 powerful communal role by encouraging people to move to the same sounds
37 at the same time, but in different ways (wilder and more restrained, skillfully
38 and not so skillfully, ironically or sincerely). Music, then, combines a respon-
39 sive form of individual self-expression with the collective expression of
40 shared taste, shared attachments. But, as I tried to show in earlier work
41 (Hesmondhalgh 2008), building on the insights of social theorists such as
42 Axel Honneth (2004), dynamics of emotional self-realisation through music

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1 are closely linked to status battles in contemporary societies marked by


2 competitive individualism; indeed, music, precisely because of its links to
3 the emotions, and therefore to privileged modes of modern personhood
4 involving emotional intelligence and sensitivity, might be a particularly
5 intense site for such struggles.
6 Third, mMusic can combine a healthy integration of different aspects of
7 our being, combining reflection and self-awareness with kinetic pleasure, as
8 Shusterman (2000) suggests. The connecting glue is some kind of emotional
9 awareness. Musicians consciously and subconsciously seek to produce
0 certain moods in those who are hearing or who at some time will hear their
11 music. In moving to music, from almost imperceptibly tapping a foot or
12 a steering wheel while the radio plays at a traffic light, through swaying at a
13 concert, to full-on dancing at a club or party, people are both thinking and
14 feeling. Of course, those thoughts might involve the mind wandering along
15 a chain of associations; and they will feature preoccupations that have
16 nothing to do with the music at all. It often takes us a while at concerts to
17 “attune” ourselves to music, and, in a live music setting, after the initial rush
18 of excitement when a band or orchestra begin playing, we might lose our
19 way for a while. But when certain kinds of music work, they put mind and
20 body together. This is one of the reasons why “the primitivist understanding
21 of black music” (Danielsen 2006, 27, 28) is so objectionable. It reduces the
22 complex interplay of thought, reflection, and skillful practice in the varieties
23 of African-American music she examines to an unmediated expression of
24 some inner essence, and in so doing often reduces people of color to one
25 aspect of themselves: their sexuality. As Danielsen shows, the skill of great
26 funk musicians is to conceal the remarkable amount of work that goes into
27 making their music sound as though it flows naturally from the impulse to
28 dance. But the common misreading of such forms of music suggests, again,
29 how difficult it is for even the most remarkable genres and practices to
30 escape the effects of the inequality and racism that so profoundly scar
31 modern societies.
32 Fourth, as Nussbaum suggests, music can heighten our understanding of
33 how others might think and feel. It can do so because music encodes human
34 emotions into sounds that can be transmitted and transported across time
35 and space, and because the understanding of these sounds is not limited
36 by the need to learn verbal languages (which makes it easier to transmit
37 than stories and poems). This has synchronic and diachronic dimensions.
38 Synchronically, it is true of our potential understanding of music that comes
39 from other societies in our own time; diachronically, it’s true of music
40 that comes from previous eras. This potentially sympathetic (sym = with,
41 pathetic = related to feeling) quality of music is severely limited however
42 by the deceptively transparent nature of musical communication. All

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1 communication, including spoken language, relies on convention. When we


2 hear a foreign language of which we have no knowledge, we are completely
3 reliant for our interpretation of what is happening on the paralinguistic
4 features of speech—tone and volume of voice, and so on. We will always
5 be aware of the “gap” left by not knowing the language. When we hear
6 music from a society that we don’t know well, by contrast, we may often be
7 deceived into thinking we understand its resonances and potential meanings
8 better than we really do. Of course, some musical features may “translate”—
9 certain combinations of musical sounds may reliably indicate happiness or
0 sadness whether emanating from Nigeria or Nebraska. But many more
11 subtle indications of mood, emotion, and purpose will be much more
12 elusive. The sympathetic quality of music—its potential heightening of our
13 understanding of how others think and feel—is also limited by the same
14 dangers of projection that I discussed in the previous point: inequality and
15 ideology might mean that musical practices and values are radically mis-
16 understood—either devalued or highly valued for the wrong reasons. This
17 is one reason why education about culture might be life-enhancing. The
18 sensitive teaching of conventions and discourses can help us to get more
19 realistically at what kinds of experiences and emotions are being coded into
20 music.
21 Fifth, music is potentially very good at being a practice in the Aristotelian
22 sense, where practice is used to mean cooperative activities which involve
23 the pursuit of excellence, and which emphasize the “internal” rewards of
24 achieving standards appropriate to those forms of activity, rather than
25 external compensations of money, power, prestige, and status (MacIntyre
26 1984, Keat 2000). It is an activity deeply loaded with ethical significance for
27 many people. Musicians put enormous amounts of time into practicing so
28 that they can be adept in making the sounds that they are required to make,
29 and this is often for the intrinsic rewards associated with making music,
30 rather than for fame itself. As Mark Banks (2012) has aptly put it, jazz is a
31 particularly acute example of a practice in this sense, because of the “sharply
32 delineated contrast and tension between the durable ethical pull of the
33 internal goods of the practice (the virtues of community participation and
34 engagement and the ‘good of a certain kind of life’ that jazz provides) against
35 the contingent external goods that musicians and institutions might seek to
36 accumulate in jazz.” But this emphasis on intrinsic rewards can lead to self-
37 exploitation in artistic labor markets characterized by massive over-supply
38 of willing workers, and reward systems hugely skewed towards the successful
39 few (Hesmondhalgh and Baker 2011).
40
41
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1 CONCLUDING COMMENTS
2 There are of course many other ways in which music might contribute to
3 human well-being, even if, in doing so, it is subject to constraints. But in this
4 final section, I want merely to address a couple of potential objections to
5 the way of thinking about music that I have advocated in this chapter.
6 First of all, given my emphasis on emotion and experience, is the critical
7 defence of music sketched here an attempt to smuggle back bourgeois
8 individualism into the critical cultural analysis of music? We experience the
9 world as individuals, and it is good to recognize that fact, while understand-
0 ing that individual experience is always socially determined and mediated.
11 Aristotelianism and pragmatism can be complements to the socialism, femi-
12 nism, and multiculturalism that guide much progressive thinking. Marx
13 himself had a deeply Aristotelian conception of humanity (Elster 1985).
14 Second, is this outline of a political aesthetics of music based on human
15 flourishing an abnegation of real politics, given that politics is inevitably
16 about collectivities? It is certainly a counter to the equation of a politics of
17 music with the question, “Can music change the world?” There is nothing
18 wrong with this question, as long as it is not assumed to exhaust our under-
19 standing of the politics, or social significance, of music. Nothing can change
20 anything by itself! However much we want to see the world become a better
21 place, surely none of us would want to see music evaluated solely on the basis
22 of the degree to which it contributes to social change. It has other purposes
23 which might be thought of as indirectly political. What I’m suggesting is that
24 the best way to approach this array of potential functions is in terms of the
25 distinctive abilities of music—distinct from other forms of human endeavor,
26 and from other forms of artistic practice and experience—to contribute to
27 human flourishing, and the ways in which social and political dynamics
28 inhibit or promote these capacities.
29
30
31 FURTHER READING
32 Frith, Simon. 1998. Performing rites: On the value of popular music. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Gracyk, Theodore. 1996. Rhythm and noise: An aesthetics of rock. London and New York: I. B. Tauris.
33 Hesmondhalgh, David. 2008. Towards a critical understanding of music, emotion and self-identity.
34 Consumption, Markets and Culture 11(4): 329–343.
35 Keat, Russell. 2000. Cultural goods and the limits of the market. London and New York: Routledge.
Negus, Keith, and Michael Pickering. 2004. Creativity, communication and cultural value., London,
36 Thousand Oaks, CA, and New Delhi: Sage.
37 Nussbaum, Martha. 2003 Upheavals of thought: The intelligence of emotions. Cambridge, U.K.:
38 Cambridge University Press.
Shusterman, Richard. 2000. Pragmatist aesthetics: Living beauty, rethinking Art. 2nd edn. Lanham,
39 MD: Rowman and Littlefield.
40 Toynbee, Jason. 2007. Bob Marley: Herald of a postcolonial world? Cambridge, U.K.: Polity.
41
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