Yale Launches Free Online Course - "Music and Social Action"

The Yale School of Music has announced the launch of its first free, open enrollment online course - "Music and Social Action."  

I am excited to be enrolled for this course, and will update this blog with reflections as the course proceeds.  I encourage all blog readers to join me in enrolling by clicking here.  Enrollment ends March 3, 2016.

The seven week course is taught by MacArthur Fellow Sebastian Ruth, and asks vital questions about musicians’ responses to the condition of the world, including:

  • What is a musician’s response to the condition of the world?
  • Do musicians have an obligation and an opportunity to serve the needs of the world with their musicianship?
  • At a time of crisis for the classical music profession, with a changing commercial landscape, a shrinking audience base, and a contraction in the number of professional orchestras, how does a young musician construct a career today?
  • Are we looking at a dying art form or a moment of re-invigoration?
  • How can classical music effect social change?
  • How has music made positive change in communities around the globe?
  • What can the field of classical music learn from other movements for social change?
  • How have educators and philosophers thought about the arts and their connection to daily contemporary life?

Each class session of this course will explore one of these questions through lectures, discussions, interviews, or documentaries and "explore the notion that the classical musician, the artist, is an important public figure with a critical role to play in society. The course will include inquiry into a set of ideas in philosophy of aesthetics; a discussion about freedom, civil society, and ways that art can play a role in readying people for democracy; discussion on philosophy of education as it relates to the question of positive social change; and an exploration of musical and artistic initiatives that have been particularly focused on a positive social impact."

The following is a video overview of the course: