Contemporary Problems of Social Work
INTERDISCIPLINARY RESEARCH QUALITY OF LIFE AND REHABILITATION TECHNOLOGIES.
Music as a source of artistic creation and self-creation: to the problem of improving the quality of life in modern society
Автор/Author: Shcherbakovа A.I., Slutskaya I.I.
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2013. - S. 44-46.
Philosophical thought of the twentieth century constantly refers to the problem of
comprehension of the creative essence of the person, realizing the great importance of art
in this process. Moreover, philosophical judgments are often couched in artistic and literary
form. So, literary and philosophical essays of the French philosopher E.O. Chartier, who was
published under the pseudonym Alain, were called “poetry in prose” by his contemporaries.
Quite naturally that he was awarded the highest award of France namely in the field of literature
. According to Allen, the main task which was laid both on the philosophy and art is to help
a person to become free, virtuous and happy. By his opinion the secret of improvement of the
life quality of modern society lies in the art of living with dignity.
B.Russell has formulated a number of questions that our contemporary continues asking
himself, trying to understand what the art of living with dignity is: what the spirit and matter,
good and evil, the sublime and the vicious lifestyle, etc is. As rightly says a philosopher, “such
questions cannot be answered in the laboratory” [19, p. 23]. It is obvious that on the responses
to them depends the strategic orientation of our life and activity, the ability to implement in
it its creativity, make a reality its artistic and esthetic, spiritual and moral ideals. And that is
exactly what may serve as one of the main criteria of quality of life, its richness, and its cultural
and creative mission.
But if the answers we can’t find in the laboratory, it is necessary to refer to the tools that can
reveal to man the depth which are beyond the scientific view. Depth, in which hidden essence of
the spirituality that defines “substantial aspect of human life” [6, p. 3]. Music is chosen as such
a tool in this work. Being “an expression of the highest meaning of life” [18, p. 136], it opens
to our contemporary the way to understanding the creative essence of man. L.V. Shaposhnikov
defines it as “the thorny path of Beauty” [26, p. 27], as an attempt to understand the inner
wealth which the person possesses, to realize its essence as the creation and the creator of
culture, infinite need in cognition and self-knowledge is a very complex task.
But without solving this problem it is impossible to talk about achieving a decent quality
of life. Appeal to music is also conditioned by the fact that “the phenomenon of musical art is
regarded in a number of esthetic and spiritual values of life as a carrier of meanings and cultural
values” [27, p. 45], understanding of which offers great opportunities for artistic creation and
The problematic field of research that aims to grasp the riddle of human “I”, encoded in the
musical text is extremely wide. It is due to the fact that the chosen instrument - music is a very
polysemantic and multifaceted. Music through the ages concentrates the artistic, esthetic and
spiritual values of mankind, preserving and transforming them in the process of self-developing
of culture. It is conditioned by the need for using the axiological-analytical method which
promotes: value comprehension of music, its essential specific features, the comprehension
of meaningful features of constructive-artistic author’s models as a manifestation of the
individual, personal and valuable vision of the world; penetration into the spiritual essence of
man, imprinted in the musical text.
Music is universal and at the same time changeable, which is why, according to modern
scholars, it must be viewed in the context of “historical time, geographical position and cultural
normativity” [23, p. 20]. “Musical comparativistics” [4, p. 72] being an analytical and comparative
method which allows to build the “arch-bridges” through the time and space, is based just on it.
Taking into account the historical time, geographical position and cultural normativity is also
necessary when we turn to the interpretation of a musical text - to musical hermeneutics, because
in addition to the musical text is necessary to consider the context to determine the place that
this work took in a sounding space of being of a certain epoch, and then to find those points of
intersection, which allow him to enter into a dialogue with the present day.
Besides you must take into account the phenomenon of anticipatory reflection, concluded
in music the “spirit of prophecy” [21, p. 107], which open to the contemporaries of the great
composers the opportunity to look into the future of culture. This is another important
perspective of understanding the music, which requires the use of predictive-modeling
method. And, of course, the most important aspect of the study of music as an instrument of
the comprehension the man’s phenomenon is to understand how and why there is (or not) the
opening of the world of musical values by the modern man, how he manages to (or can’t) open
the hidden “door” to the treasury of spiritual wealth of mankind, to the sounding space of
To comprehend this process T.V. Adorno proposes to review different types of attitude to
music. The first type, by his opinion, is the type of expert, who understands everything, «from
CONTEMPORARY PROBLEMS OF SOCIAL WORK VOLUME 1, No. 2, 2015
whose attention nothing escapes and who at any given moment is aware of what he hears” [1, p.
14]. This is usually a professional musician for whom is not only open the door to the sounding
space being but he lives in this space, knows not only every “structure” in it, but also the
material of which it is built, the tools used in the process of its “construction. “
We appreciate the second type, represented by Adorno as a “good listener” who “also hears
not only the individual musical parts, but spontaneously forms the connections , expresses wellgrounded
judgments ,does not judge by prestige category or arbitrariness of taste” [1, p. 14]. He
is not a professional, but it’s hot lover. He feels a constant need to communicate with the music;
it is a part of his life, and the language of music is his mother tongue. Such listener is used to be
called music man and the musicality, rightly considered by A.V. Toropova, is an aspect of vital
activity, that is why it “is present in all human societies and cultures, and therefore, is universal
and at the same time ethno-peculiar feature of human mental activity” [23, p. 23].
S. Collins also agrees with this idea that all of us are originally musical. This is also the
point of view of the famous Russian bard Y.Vizbor, who invoked his contemporaries’ “to fill the
hearts with the music.” He was convinced that it is the only way to arrange a “holiday from drab
existence.” As the authors of this study also support this view, so as a primary objective in the
presented work extends the study of methods and techniques which allows modern man to learn
how to navigate himself in the world of musical values and, thereby, contribute to his life a new
spiritual content, which greatly improves its quality.
As we agreed, that all men are originally musical, the first problem to be solved is to create
conditions in order to preserve and develop this musicality. And for this it is necessary to start
from an early age the formation of the esthetic attitude to reality. One of the greatest musicians
of the twentieth century - composer, teacher, educator, social activist D.B. Kabalevsky, who
played a huge role in the development of general music education in Russia, was convinced
that “every composer is obliged to give children not only part of his talent, skill and experience,
but also a part of his heart. And he will never regret it. He will be said sincerely thanks, first of
all by the children themselves, without noise, without fanfare. And what could be for us more
happiness than to realize that we are helping to grow new generations by our art! “[5, p. 9].
At the last festival which was held in December 2014 in Moscow and was dedicated to the
110th anniversary of D.B. Kabalevsky, one of the concerts presented the oeuvre of young
composers - undergraduate and graduate students of the Moscow State Conservatory named
after P.I. Tchaikovsky. And it is very symbolic that many of them remembered that their first
steps in music were connected with the work of D.B. Kabalevsky - with his songs, children’s
products for a variety of musical instruments. These works became a conductor to the sounding
space of existence, to the amazing and wonderful world of artistic creation. It is important that
in the creative “portfolio” of contemporary composers (like the great masters such as Bach,
Schumann, Tchaikovsky and others.) also can be found a place for works addressed to children
There are many studies devoted to the esthetic education of children, adolescents, youth,
indicating that its significance has been recognized throughout the world. As rightly considers
N.L. Poltoratskaya, “today the need of familiarizing the younger generation to the eternal truths,
spiritual and moral values that define the essence of human life is quite obvious” [16, p. 11].
That is why the artistic and esthetic education of the younger generation today is considered
as a factor of socialization , and as a condition of cognitive and personal development, as
a basis of esthetic consciousness, moral education  and cultural reflexing . We propose
an integrative approach to the formation a holistic view of art of the younger pupils.  A
number of integrated technologies which have been successfully applied to music lessons were
designed by T.V. Nadolinskaya .
S.A. Fadeyeva substantiated the succession in the processes of music education and
upbringing (kindergarten - school - college - university). Researcher rightly considers that
“it is important to preserve and enrich the musical and esthetic experience that allows to
implement “the penetrative” successive development of musical culture of personality” [24, p.
3]. M.A. Gorbunova sees the formation of art students’ outlook as a necessary condition for their
comprehensive development .
The role of music and theater education in the development of the emotional sphere of the
modern student’s personality was convincingly established in the works of A.P. Tsilinko .
The very interesting model of developing the interest to classical music among today’s youth is
designed by I.S. Kazakova. The model is based on sinemafonia which is an “artistic, bisensoric,
procedural and expressive art, using the resources of technical tools and neuroscience research
in the creation of audio-visual synthetic works based on the classical music works. Sinemafonia
is characterized by dynamic time-space image, which is in direct correlation with the structure
and artistic image of a musical work “[7, p. 10].
The works addressed to children with limited development opportunities are of particular
interest. This is a very serious social problem that must be solved. “The rehabilitation of
these children through art, involving them in an active creative process aimed at improving
the mental and physical health” [8, p. 3] - is a real step in the direction of improving their
quality of life, enabling them to get rid of the feeling of inferiority and isolation from society.
Rhythmic education [8, p. 5], the development of the singing voice [8, p. 19] involving in the
process of music-making [8, p. 39] allowed the authors of the presented methods to achieve
significant results in the development of intellectual, creative and physical abilities of children
with impaired motor and speech functions.
And, of course, a significant amount of work facing the place of music in contemporary life and
developing the artistic-esthetic experience among the students was analyzed in the process of
studying the problem of musical-esthetic education. The musical culture in these works is seen in
the context of formation of outlook of the person , preserving the traditions of national culture
, as a source of knowledge- experience , and artistic and creative activity is interpreted as
a foundation in value formation and self-determination of the youth of today [20 ].
Study and analysis of works devoted to the problem of musical and esthetic education of the
younger generation, produced at the first stage of research, allowed to say that there are many
educational models that contribute to the formation of children’s and adolescent’s musical and
esthetic experience in and adolescents. At the second phase of the study, an analysis of how
effectively the modern system of music education, enlightment and upbringing implements
these models, how artistic and esthetic experience has youth, what impressions students have
about art in general and music in particular. For this, colleges and universities of several Russian
cities over the last decade were interviewed.
Studies that reveal the role of music in student subcultures are very important for
understanding the directions of work with student youth. So G.N. Konovalova presents in her
work a picture of the musical interests of students of the Institute of Physical Education, which
once again proved the correctness of the assertion that all of us are musical by nature. So, music
turned out to be “the absolute leader in a rating of leisure ... 86.7% of respondents indicated
music as their main hobby” [9, p. 105]. Unfortunately, this figure is only at first glance gives
rise to satisfaction.
It is sufficient to analyze the taste preferences of the survey participants to understand that
the situation is not so favorable. Favorite musical products of young people belong to the “pop
music”, chanson, and repertoire discos and as a favorite singer was named Verka Serduchka (the
interview was conducted in 2004). According to the author of the publication, “Serduchka’s
popularity among college students has virtually no limit, and she was called favorite performer
by every second respondent” [9, p. 105].
If we come back again to the classification of music listener’s types proposed by Adorno, the
students of the Institute of Physical Education are consumers of entertaining music that means
CONTEMPORARY PROBLEMS OF SOCIAL WORK VOLUME 1, No. 2, 2015
they are at the lowest level of auditory perception. Therefore the fact that all of us are musical
originally, is only the confirmation of need in music that humanity demonstrates throughout
the historical course of development. And what kind of music we want to listen, what we can
understand and appreciate is a matter of musical education, enlightment and upbringing, the
question of finding artistic and esthetic experience, which, as previously noted, it is necessary
to educate from childhood and throughout human life.
But let us continue the analysis of the level of musical and esthetic experience, which is
demonstrated by the modern youth. So very close to the previously presented results were
shown as well by the students of many technical colleges and universities. Number of fans of
classical music (mostly popular) does not exceed 3-5%. Of course, today’s young people call
other names of favorite artists, but it does not change anything, because all the artistic and
esthetic criteria are exactly the same as Verka Serduchka. A bit better taste in music is shown by
the students of humanities departments, where the percentage of fans of classical music varies
between 10 and 13%. And among the favorite singers we can heard quite other names. There are
fans of jazz (about 15%) and bard songs (about 18%). Obviously, there is a recent increase of
the interest in music. Today, about 23% of the respondents are familiar with it, happy to attend
movies and performances in the musical genre.
Interviews were conducted with the respondents to the surveys, who expressed interest
in classical music. Those interviews showed that the interest was not accidental, that since
the early childhood music had been present in their lives. Young people told us that they had
participated in children’s concerts, performances held at the kindergarten or school, attended
concerts and musical performances with their parents. That was another evidence of the need
to create a permanent artistic environment, where musical-aesthetic education of the younger
generation is systematically and purposefully carried out. Thus, the idea of continuity, advanced
by S.A. Fadeyeva, received full confirmation.
For many respondents to the survey, inhabitants of Moscow, a “key” to the music space was
N.I. Sats Children’s Musical Theater. The students enthusiastically told about what a strong
impression the performances of this wonderful theater had made on them in their early childhood.
Conversations with students fully confirmed the idea advanced by A.P. Tsilinko, who believed
that musical theater played a huge role in the development of emotional sphere of personality,
that it was a powerful tool for development of emotional responsiveness, sensitivity to the
experiences of another person’s ability to empathy, one of the most effective ways of forming
an aesthetically-valuable relation to the environment world” [25, p. 4].
Conclusion. Unfortunately, surveys have shown that, despite the development of extremely
promising educational models, many of them are still only interesting projects, their introduction
into the existing system of music education, awareness and up-bringing does not happen. This
suggests the need for its improvement, revision of many existing views which the work of the
children’s music and art schools is based on, and to pay more attention to additional educational
It is important that their work wouldn’t be focused not so much on the formation of certain
musical skills and abilities (which of course is not excluded), or on strongly encourage of the
administrations in preparing children to all sorts of children’s competition (what can do only
gifted children), but on the principle of formation all children’s interest in classical music. It
should be recognized that the conversations conducted with teachers of children’s musical and
educational institutions have shown that not everyone is ready for transformations. 47% of the
participants in these discussions considered pointless and even harmful to introduce models
that violate the usual course of the educational process. Although everybody complained about
the drop in student’s interest to learn, that the traditional methods of work do not give the
This indicates that 47% of professional music teachers do not realize that their main mission
is not only to teach his students to play a particular instrument or sing, but to make the music
as a lifetime source, that fuels the creative power of their pupils, allows to overcome the
difficulties on the way to the goal. It is important that each of them - the future mathematician
or economist, doctor or lawyer - could found the “key” to the sounding space of existence and
that the music could give them joy and delight, direct them to creative exploration of their way,
give rise to a need for artistic creation and self-creation.
It is required that each teacher-musician realized not only artistic but also social importance
of his activities that can and should influence the quality of life of a modern society that is sure
to become a new factor for their attitude and professional growth. Thus, this study shows that
the system of music education (both professional and general) today faces a number of critical
problems to be solved both on the theoretical and practical level.
It is the update of musical educational process content, the development and introduction
of new artistic and educational models, training and retraining of teachers of music, and
activation of musical educational activity. This is not an exhaustive list of issues that should
be addressed today that opens up a wide field for further research on music as a source of
formation of positive social well-being, social health, social renewal, and a source of creation