Notions of Mandate, Knowledge and Research in Norwegian Classical Music Performance Studies
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionJournal for Research in Arts and Sports Education. 2019, 3 (1), 78-100. https://doi.org/10.23865/jased.v3.1284
Policy changes and higher education reforms challenge performing musician programmes across Europe. The academisation of arts education means that classical performance programmes are now marked by strong expectations of research paths, publications, and the standardisation of courses, grades and positions. Drawing on interviews with ten teachers and leaders within the field of higher music education, this article discusses notions of mandate, knowledge and research in classical performance music education in Norway. Against the backdrop of academisation, the aim of this article is to illuminate central tensions and negotiations concerning mandate, knowledge and research within higher music education. The problem concerns issues of who should be judged as qualified and who should have the authority to speak on behalf of the performing music expertise community. The study is part of the larger study Discourses of Academisation and the Music Profession in Higher Music Education (DAPHME), conducted by a team of senior researchers in Sweden, Norway and Germany. Through an analytic-theoretical reading of the empirical data, informed by Foucault’s power/knowledge concept, two discourses on mandate are identified (the awakening discourse and the Bildung discourse) as well as three discourses on knowledge (the handicraft discourse, the entrepreneurship discourse and the discourse of critical reflection) and two discourses on research (the collaborative discourse and the ‘perforesearch’ discourse). The latter of the two research discourses pinpoints a subject position as a musician/researcher with knowledge, craft and skills in both music performing and research.