Music and Social Change

François Matarasso discusses music and social change. He argues that the “social outcomes – a word I prefer to impact – of music making are real, complex and profound. They can be transformative, even life changing. They are not, however, only positive.”

Episode 012     October 7, 2022
Contributors    François Matarasso    

In this episode François Matarasso reads a presentation that he originally gave at Handelsbeurs in Ghent in Belgium on 6 October 2015 at the first International Symposium of the Social Impact of Making Music research centre of the Ghent University Association.

He argues that “whatever judgements we make about individual projects, we need a good understanding of what is happening and why, if we use a term such as the social impact of music-making. We should not adopt unquestioningly the thinking of those who recognise, however simplistically, the transformative power of the arts and expect to harness it for their own purposes. Whatever we think of those purposes, whether we share them or contest them, the problem is that they make some deeply misleading assumptions when they are applied to arts practice”.


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