Honors College status or permission of the
What is music? Do musical works mean anything? If so, how? Does
music have some special connection with emotion? If so, what is that
connection? Can music be sad? Is music a language? Does music
depict things similar to the way paintings do (only aurally instead of visually)?
What is the ontological status of a musical work? Can music, once
created, be destroyed? (Does destroying the manuscripts and recordings destroy the
music?) We'll look at music from a philosophical perspective, not just concert hall
music, but popular music as well. We'll explore the views of Eduard Hanslick, Peter
Kivy, Stephen Davies, and others.
Eduard Hanslick, On the Musically Beautiful (Hackett, 1986; ISBN
Peter Kivy, Introduction to a Philosophy of Music (Oxford, 2002;
Stephen Davies, Musical Meaning and Expression (Cornell, 1994; ISBN