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DOI 10.12887/28-2015-2-110-13

Janusz JUSIAK – The Ethos of Music and the Determinism of Art

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The article discusses selected problems resulting from the impossibility of attributing to the art of music a system of ideas and values, traditionally described as the ethos of music, that would be independent of the specificity of music as such. In the opening part of the paper some arguments are put forward to support the thesis that the concept of the ethos of art is itself ambiguous and not entirely coherent with its common explanations. Moreover, the concept in question is subject to change in history, depending on the intellectual climate of a given epoch and the prevalent views on the sense of artistic creativity and its value for a human individual, the issue being particularly significant in the case of the ethos of music. The issue in question is discussed in detail on the example of the two most frequently brought up conceptions of music, namely, the romantic idealist and the organic rationalist ones, the latter having originated in ancient Greece. The article further discusses the working of certain causal influences on music and musical creativity, in particular those which seem directly bound to the music itself and which provide its either external or internal descriptions, being determinants of art rather than determinants of music as such. The author concludes by putting forward the thesis that the submission of music to the dictate of certain powers which either reside outside its specific field or are generated by it is a phenomenon that results in a paradox. Yet disregarding this paradox would be a misguided step, tantamount to ignoring the consequences of some facts discussed in the article.

Translated by Dorota Chabrajska

Keywords: problem of the ethos of music, ethos of art, romantic idealist conception of music, organic rationalist conception of music, determinants of art, determinants of music

Contact: Zakład Ontologii i Teorii Poznania, Instytut Filozofii, Wydział Filozofii i Socjologii, Uniwersytet Marii Curie-Skłodowskiej,
pl. Marii Curie-Skłodowskiej 4, 20-031 Lublin, Poland
E-mail: janusz.jusiak@poczta.umcs.lublin.pl
Phone: +48 81 5375197

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» 110_Jusiak.pdf

  1. ISSN 0860-8024
  2. The Republic of Poland Ministry of Science and Higher Education Value: 20.00
  3. Quarterly “Ethos” is indexed by the following databases: EBSCO, CEEOL, Index Copernicus (ICV 2017: 55.26), Philosopher’s Index, ERIH Plus.
  4. DOI Prefix 10.12887