Associacao Brasileira de Educadores Musicais (ABEM Journal)
Social contract theory has been used to explain the origin, emergence and justification of governing authorities and as a way of “understanding the political relationships in which people already find themselves, including their obligation to obey the sovereign” (Newey, 2008, p. 133). It has also been used as a “nonliteral image [that is] useful in suggesting directions for social change”(Keeley, 1985, p. 241). Through the lens of social contract theory this article uncovers a series of questions that speak directly to music education in both the U.S. and Brazil. What is the nature of the relationship music educators have to authority? Is there a state of nature from which music education arose and could return? What, if any, guiding morals exist in this state of nature and how have those perpetuated and reproduced policy and advocacy? What kind of contract has been made and should it be kept?
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