Between Pre-Objectivity and Objectivity: A Phenomenological Study of Nordoff-Robbins Music Therapists' Experiences of Healing in Music

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Creator: 

Graham, Megan Elizabeth

Date: 

2013

Abstract: 

Following four months of fieldwork at the Nordoff-Robbins Center for Music Therapy in New York City, this thesis investigates the experiences of Nordoff-Robbins music therapists who work with “hard to reach” clients from a phenomenological perspective. The “hard to reach” client is conceptualized as having a disorder of communication which therapy restores. Based on therapists’ experiences, three phenomenological problems are addressed: the problem of training therapeutic habits of perception, the problem of creativity, and the problem of language to describe lived experience in music. It was found that creative music therapists learn to listen and respond with clinical intention, guiding the pre-objective, synaesthetic perception of the client. In improvisation, determinacy and indeterminacy are negotiated with each musical expression, moving between pre-objective and objective experiential realms. Finally, therapists’ lived experience is partial and indeterminate and is expressed through metaphor and poetics to best capture the pre-objective experience of the world.

Subject: 

SOCIAL SCIENCES Anthropology - Cultural
HEALTH AND ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES Health Sciences - Rehabilitation and Therapy
COMMUNICATIONS AND THE ARTS Music

Language: 

English

Publisher: 

Carleton University

Thesis Degree Name: 

Master of Arts: 
M.A.

Thesis Degree Level: 

Master's

Thesis Degree Discipline: 

Anthropology

Parent Collection: 

Theses and Dissertations

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