The Grain of the Music: Does Music Education “Mean” Something in Japan?

Tadahiko Imada

in The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy in Music Education

Published in print May 2012 | ISBN: 9780195394733
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks

 The Grain of the Music: Does Music Education “Mean” Something in Japan?

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Music itself sounds prior to any indication or representation or interpretation by language. As sonorous air, sound is the grain music, and its significance requires no signification by language at all. This article notes that it is important for music educators to learn how to teach students to experience the grain of music. It examines the Japanese Ministry of Education's guideline for public music education, one that is still in effect, called the Course of Study. Music as a school subject in Japan has been marginalized in comparison with other major subjects such as Japanese, mathematics, and the natural and social sciences. Traditional Japanese music teachers (masters) regarded aural transmission more highly than notation and often offered their students little guidance through the spoken word.

Keywords: Japanese music education; grain of music; aural transmission; Course of Study

Article.  7442 words. 

Subjects: Music ; Music Education and Pedagogy

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