Instrumental teaching: Language and action in learning processes and embodiments

1.1 Social, cultural, linguistic and educational mediation
Paper in a Symposium (Symp)
20 minutes
For Vygotsky (1935/1997), the relations between a subject and an object are widely determined by cultural and historical significations. In other terms, it’s quite unthinkable to imagine a subject and an object immediately linked, in an immediate relationship. When this relationship is conceived in order to include an action and a dynamic, a third element appears: corporeality. Already constructed corporeality and emerging corporeality – in a learning or training context – allow us to think works of art and artistic practices as breaking elements which produce development. Jaques-Dalcroze (1981, p. 22) makes this sort of statement: “artists are not doing anything else than (…) transforming the physical rhythms in mental rhythms”. To him, that means that attitudes and movements – including the most prosaic of them – provide musical experience. He says that “the way a pupil walks reveals”, for instance, “physical, but also spiritual dispositions of this pupil” (Jaques-Dalcroze, 1981, p. 21). In a way, the aim of the Dalcrozian pedagogy is to specialize certain movements in order to construct technical and musical knowledge, but in continuity with the everyday body. How? In developing the performing body on the basis of the everyday body. We shall analyze other constructions about musical and artistic teaching, which aim to take a distance with the everyday use of the body.
University of Geneva

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