The mid-term paper assignment requires you to analyze one piece of music from the perspective of three of the philosophers or philosophical perspectives we have read about so far this semester. These analyses should build toward what you think the potential philosophical value of the piece of music you have selected is.
The philosophers we have read have offered a number of measures by which we might judge the philosophical value of a piece of music. For Plato, it was the degree to which music might turn our minds toward contemplation of the Good; for Hegel, it is the degree to which music can reflect/represent Spirit; for many of the philosophers Kivy addresses in this “History” chapter, music represents emotions to varying degrees; and for Kivy himself, who takes a Formalist perspective, music, is an object, can make us believe it is beautiful and thus give us the feeling of transcendence.
Using three perspectives addressed in our class material thus far, analyze the piece of music. After you have analyzed the piece of music from these perspectives, offer your own perspective on the philosophical value of the piece you have chosen.
Your paper should start with an introductory paragraph in which you introduce the piece of music you will address, the philosophies you will use, and present your thesis on your position on the piece.
The next three paragraphs should present concise analyses from the perspective of each of the philosophies you have chosen. Briefly present the philosophy, give what you think would be that philosophy’s perspective on the piece you have chosen, and then back it up with two to three specific examples of elements of the piece and how the philosophy would analyze it.
After these three paragraphs, present your position on the philosophical value of the piece you have chosen. Give at least three specific examples of elements of the piece that you analyze to support your position.
There ought to also be a concluding paragraph in which you re-summarize your points.
The paper ought to consist of 4-6 double-spaced pages typed in a 12-point Times New Roman or similar font. Proper use of the conventions of professional written English are expected. ANY quotation or paraphrase REQUIRES a parenthetical citation. A works cited page is not necessary here unless for whatever reason you refer to some source that we have not used in class (and doing this is not required). The mid-term paper is worth a potential 50 points.