The Road Goes Ever On: Estelle Jorgensen's Legacy in Music Education


Section II - Action and Quest

Publication Date



Western University

Place of Publication

London, Ontario Canada


pilgrim, quest, hero, discipline, journey, initiation, paradise, music education, Estelle Jorgensen

Online ISBN





In Pictures of Music Education, Estelle Jorgensen extends her analysis of the pilgrimage metaphor and its associated model of quest in music education. The purpose of the present chapter is not to refute or critique Jorgensen’s work with this metaphor but to build on it by exploring even further the possible meanings captured by the metaphor for music educators. While the notion of pilgrimage carries religious overtones from its long association with faith practices, in a secularized world our present understandings continue to be shaped by remnants of meaning from past mythologies. To that end, various notions associated with pilgrimage are explored in the current context: quest (what is a pilgrimage?), hero (what is a pilgrim?), initiation and graduation (how does one get started on a pilgrimage?), journey (what is a pilgrimage like?), discipline (what does it take to be a pilgrim?), and paradise (where is the pilgrim headed and why?). The analysis suggests that the pilgrimage metaphor applied to music education evokes a progressive view of teaching and learning. The metaphor and its glosses may serve as a counterinfluence to standardized curricula, assessment procedures, and external expectations, for instance, that impact how music education is conducted today.

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Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.