Acts of Hospitality

Lee Higgins

in Community Music

Published in print July 2012 | ISBN: 9780199777839
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199950218 | DOI:
Acts of Hospitality

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Chapter 8 explores the concept of “community” as it relates to the larger concept of “community music.” The overall goal is to suggest that those invested in community music might like to re-imagine how the term “community” operates within its name. It begins with an etymologic analysis of the concept, suggesting that the “community” within “community music” is best understood as “hospitality,” as initially articulated by Jacques Derrida. The chapter proposes that “hospitality” encompasses the central characteristics of community music practice, broadly understood as people, participation, places, equality of opportunity, and diversity. It does not argue that hospitality should replace the term community, but that “hospitality” evokes the practical meaning of “community” in the work of community musicians. From this perspective, the chapter proposes that “community,” conceived actively as “an act of hospitality,” runs deeply through the practice of community music, and that an acute awareness of its production will expose the distinctiveness of community music within the musical discourse more generally.

Keywords: community; hospitality; Derrida; people; participation; places; equality of opportunity; diversity

Chapter.  5412 words. 

Subjects: Ethnomusicology

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