Event Title

Riding the Contours of Marketing: Exploring the Depths of Educational Materials through Critical Theory

Start Date

1-6-2011 10:00 AM

End Date

1-6-2011 10:30 AM

Description

Marketing companies shape and mold our perceptions of their products in various ways. They design their campaigns in ways that are strategically geared towards corporate interests (Woodford, 2005). When involved in educational materials, corporate interests do not include critical thinking and can only offer the illusion of choice (Woodford, 2005). In this way piano method books are all essentially the same because our end goals are never questioned and the hidden curriculum prevails; thus we stay on the curve or contour of marketing. The critical teacher, however, can escape the veil of corporate interest and participate in reshaping the pedagogical landscape. In this presentation, I explore the hidden curriculum through an evaluation of piano study in three areas: learning theory, capitalism, and social reproduction. First, piano study is based on a learning theory which is an historical commentary on the origins of piano pedagogy. Philosophical positions become so firmly established and deeply rooted in the language of music that it is often difficult to cast a critical eye. Second, an investigation into method books through Marx’s theory of commodity fetishism will show how teachers and students are taught to consume education. Capitalism, through Marx’s lens, explains how the teacher and student become separated from each other and how the method book becomes the teacher. This also describes Lukacs’ concept of how labour has become reified. In this way commodity fetishism and alienation show how teaching philosophies are both distributed and dis/tributed. Finally, Bourdieu’s cultural theory will examine how distinctions of taste are learned through one’s habitus, which then contributes to class. Lloyd’s (2008) inclusion of desire to Bourdieu’s cultural theory will be discussed, and combined with Marx’s commodity fetishism, I will show that by creating trance/actions private piano lessons have become a commodity and the student is the product.

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Jun 1st, 10:00 AM Jun 1st, 10:30 AM

Riding the Contours of Marketing: Exploring the Depths of Educational Materials through Critical Theory

Marketing companies shape and mold our perceptions of their products in various ways. They design their campaigns in ways that are strategically geared towards corporate interests (Woodford, 2005). When involved in educational materials, corporate interests do not include critical thinking and can only offer the illusion of choice (Woodford, 2005). In this way piano method books are all essentially the same because our end goals are never questioned and the hidden curriculum prevails; thus we stay on the curve or contour of marketing. The critical teacher, however, can escape the veil of corporate interest and participate in reshaping the pedagogical landscape. In this presentation, I explore the hidden curriculum through an evaluation of piano study in three areas: learning theory, capitalism, and social reproduction. First, piano study is based on a learning theory which is an historical commentary on the origins of piano pedagogy. Philosophical positions become so firmly established and deeply rooted in the language of music that it is often difficult to cast a critical eye. Second, an investigation into method books through Marx’s theory of commodity fetishism will show how teachers and students are taught to consume education. Capitalism, through Marx’s lens, explains how the teacher and student become separated from each other and how the method book becomes the teacher. This also describes Lukacs’ concept of how labour has become reified. In this way commodity fetishism and alienation show how teaching philosophies are both distributed and dis/tributed. Finally, Bourdieu’s cultural theory will examine how distinctions of taste are learned through one’s habitus, which then contributes to class. Lloyd’s (2008) inclusion of desire to Bourdieu’s cultural theory will be discussed, and combined with Marx’s commodity fetishism, I will show that by creating trance/actions private piano lessons have become a commodity and the student is the product.