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  • 1.
    Persson, Mikael
    Royal College of Music in Stockholm, Department of Music Education.
    Artefakter och positioneringar i musikundervisning2013In: Musikforskning idag - Abstracts, Stockholm: Svenska samfundet för musikforskning , 2013, p. 22-24Conference paper (Other academic)
    Abstract [sv]

    I musikundervisning på en högstadieskola återfinns massor av olika artefakter, d.v.s. fysiskt förekommande föremål som eleverna interagerar med. Det kan handla om artefakter som har någon relation till musikämnet så som mikrofoner, stativ, gitarrer, trumset, keyboards, pianon, förstärkare, iPads, iPods, hörlurar etc. På vilka olika sätt kan vi analysera betydelsen av dessa artefakter?

    Artefakter förstås inom sociokulturellt inspirerade teorier kulturella verktyg/redskap/tool-kit (Säljö, 2006). Artefakter bidrar inom dessa teorier till att bättre förstå vilket lärande som sker, vilket lärande som blir möjligt i undervisningen.

    Utifrån att det är relevant också för vilket lärande som sker vill jag i min kommande avhandling studera hur det kommer sig att eleverna väljer att agera som de gör i klassrummet, varför de väljer vissa instrument före andra etc. Jag vill problematisera elevernas agerande i termer av subjektsskapande i musikundervisningen utifrån ett kritiskt diskurspsykologiskt perspektiv (Wetherell & Potter, 1992; Wetherell, Taylor, & Yates, 2001; Wetherell, 2001; Winther Jørgensen, Phillips, & Torhell, 2000). En möjlig analytisk ingång till detta, som jag vill resonera kring i denna presentation, är att studera hur de förstår och förhåller sig till de olika artefakter som finns i undervisningen i sitt subjektsskapande och också teoretiskt närma mig en mer posthumanistiskt influerad förståelse av artefakter (Hultman; Hultman, 2009, 2011, Åsberg, Hultman, & Lee, 2012).

    Den kritiska diskurspsykologin innebär att artefakter inte har någon i sig inneboende betydelse, utan att den ges mening genom det sätt på vilket vi talar om dem. För att förstå hur eleverna agerar måste vi alltså också synliggöra hur de förstår musikundervisningen och dess artefakter. För att förtydliga hur detta spel kan se ut kommer jag att exemplifiera med hur olika artefakter kan vara olika problematiska för pojkar respektive flickor att förhålla sig till. (Ganetz, 2009, Björck, 2011, Nordström, 2010, Bergman, 2009).

    Referenser

    • Bergman, Å. (2009). Växa upp med musik : ungdomars musikanvändande i skolan och på fritiden. Göteborg: Institutionen för kulturvetenskaper, Göteborgs universitet.
    • Björck, C. (2011). Claiming space discourses on gender, popular music, and social change. (Diss Göteborg Göteborgs universitet, 2010), Academy of Music and Drama, University of Gothenburg ; Högskolan för scen och musik,, Göteborg.  
    • Ganetz, H. (2009). Rundgång : genus och populärmusik. Göteborg: Makadam.
    • Hultman, K. Making matter matter as a constitutive force in children's subjectivities. Contemporary Issues in Early Childhood. doi: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-63410
    • Hultman, K. The social and competent child as co-produced by nonhuman actors. Contemporary Issues in Early Childhood. doi: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-63412
    • Hultman, K. (2009). A posthumanist deconstruction of gendered matematical subjectivitites. International Journal for Equity and Innovation in Early Childhood, 7(2), 16-27. doi: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-53679
    • Hultman, K. (2011). Barn, linjaler och andra aktörer : posthumanistiska perspektiv på subjektskapande och materialitet i förskola/skola. (Diss (sammanfattning) Stockholm Stockholms universitet, 2011), Department of Education, Stockholm University,, Stockholm. Retrieved from http://urn.kb.se/resolve?urn=urn:nbn:se:su:diva-63413 urn:nbn:se:su:diva-63413 
    • Nordström, M. (2010). Rocken spelar roll : en etnologisk studie av kvinnliga rockmusiker. Umeå: Institutionen för kultur- och medievetenskaper, Umeå universitet.
    • Säljö, R. (2006). Lärande och kulturella redskap [Ljudupptagning] : om lärprocesser och det kollektiva minnet. Enskede: TPB.
    • Wetherell, M., & Potter, J. (1992). Mapping the language of racism : discourse and the legitimation of exploitation. New York: Columbia University Press.
    • Wetherell, M., Taylor, S., & Yates, S. J. (2001). Discourse as data : a guide for analysis. London: Sage.
    • Wetherell, M., Taylor, S., Yates, S. J., & Open University. (2001). Discourse theory and practice : a reader. London: Sage.
    • Winther Jørgensen, M., Phillips, L., & Torhell, S.-E. (2000). Diskursanalys som teori och metod. Lund: Studentlitteratur.
    • Åsberg, C., Hultman, M., & Lee, F. (2012). Posthumanistiska nyckeltexter (1. uppl. ed.). Lund: Studentlitteratur.
  • 2.
    Persson, Mikael
    Royal College of Music in Stockholm, Department of Music Education.
    Avvikande eller queer: En diskurspsykologisk-nymaterialistisk läsning av Jimmy Scotts röst och karriär2015In: Knowledge formation in and through music: Festschrift in honor of Cecilia K. Hultberg 2015 / [ed] Gullö, Jan-Olof; Holgersson, Per-Henrik, Stockholm: Royal College of Music , 2015, p. 161-171Chapter in book (Other academic)
  • 3.
    Persson, Mikael
    Royal College of Music in Stockholm, Department of Music Education.
    Completed PhD. Inte bara musik.: Om elevers positionerande i grundskolans musikklassrum2019In: NNMPF 2019: Futures of Music in Higher Education February 26–28, 2019, Royal College of Music in Stockholm, 2019Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [sv]

    Den första delen av titeln pekar på både ett resultat av avhandlingen och en kritisk utgångspunkt på samma gång. Musik har återkommande i kulturstudier, såväl som i skolans läroplan och i musikpedagogisk forskning, pekats ut som mycket intimt förknippad med vad som brukar kallas för identitetsskapande i bred bemärkelse. Försök att inom mer formell utbildning närma sig ungdomars intresse för musik, i syfte att skapa högre grad av motivation hos eleverna, har återkommande resulterat i att populärmusik, i en vidare mening, likställts med ungdomars musikaliska vardagskultur. Att populärmusik i en bredare bemärkelse likställs med ungdomars vardagskultur kan också vara en förklaring till att populärmusik i mycket hög grad präglar den musik som spelas i den svenska grundskolans musikklassrum. I min avhandling har jag istället haft ambitionen att undersöka elevers positionerande i musikklassrummet utan att på förhand utgå från att musik utgör en väsentlig del av densamma. I förlängningen är min förhoppning att studiens resultat ska kunna bidra till att fördjupa och ytterligare komplicera den musikpedagogiska forskningen som rör maktrelationer i musikklassrummet och som i sin förlängning syftar till att skapa mer likvärdiga förutsättningar för elever i alla musikklassrum.

    Det finns i nuläget en förhållandevis stor mängd studier som säger något om olika potentiella positioner som aktualiseras i grundskolans musikklassrum. Olikheter mellan eleverna beskrivs inte sällan utifrån antaganden om olika förutsättningar att medverka i musikundervisningen, och operationaliseras utifrån deras olika förkunskaper i musik. Eleverna positioneras också som olika beträffande deras musikintresse både utifrån genre och instrument. Inom vad som går under benämningen garagebandsundervisning antas både att eleverna har ett intresse att musicera och att de bär på en informell kompetens att lära sig musicera själva. Eleverna beskrivs också som olika konforma i grundskolans klassrum, något som beskrivs som ett utfall av olika grad av insocialisering i skolans normsystem. Flera av dessa olika positionera diskuteras också återkommande utifrån mer generella positioner kopplade till social klasstillhörighet eller kön. En del av dessa studier har sitt huvudsakliga material hämtat från deltagande observationer av interaktioner i musikklassrummet, men det finns inte många studier som gör detaljerade analyser av elevernas interaktioner. 

    En position i den här avhandlingen ska alltså läsas som socialt skapad, fragmentarisk, och föränderlig. Positioner skapas i interaktion elever emellan i undervisningssituationen och görs så med hjälp av olika retoriska resurser som eleverna har att tillgå. Dessa resurser kan både vara direkt språkliga och bygga på en sekventiell analys av interaktionen, vilket är inspirerat från samtalsanalysen, men också utgöras av referenser som hämtas från olika etablerade diskurser som bidrar till att positionera eleverna på olika sätt. Slutligen är positionen också fragmenterad vilket innebär att den inte på något sätt beskriver en helhet, utan snarare en aspekt i vilken eleven själv framträder som annorlunda i relation till andra elever i musikklassrummet.

    För att förstärka möjligheten att säga något om musikens betydelse i ungdomars positionerande har jag valt att designa studien som en fallstudie med stor variation avseende elevernas på förhand uttryckliga musikintresse.  också designen av studien göra det möjligt att studera detta. Jag har identifierat två olika musikklassrum från två olika skolor för att sedan kunna jämföra resultaten dessa emellan. Eleverna i det ena skolan, som jag valt att benämna Musikprofilskolan, har själva valt mer musik på schemat. De har också gjort ett inträdesprov för att komma in på skolan och därmed visat att de kommit upp till en tillräcklig nivå vittnar också om att deras intresse varit någorlunda ihållande över tid. Eleverna i den andra skolan, som jag benämnt Centralskolan, har snarare valt den närmsta skolan i bostadsområdet och därmed inte aktivt identifierat musik som viktigare än andra ämnen. I övrigt liknar skolorna varandra. Med vad som kan kallas deltagande videoetnografi har jag vidare dokumenterat undervisningen under en termins tid, transkriberat och tematiserat materialet utifrån vad som framträder som centralt för elevernas positionerande i de båda musikklassrummen. Vidare har jag i detalj analyserat utvalda sekvenser med hjälp av analytiska verktyg hämtade framför allt från samtalsanalys och diskurspsykologi.

    Elevernas positionerande påverkar deras delaktighet i musikaliska praktiker i musikklassrummet och detta sker på olika sätt i de olika musikklassrummen. I Centralskolans musikklassrum utgör konformitet en mer eftersträvansvärd position än rebellen vilket skapar goda förutsättningar klassrumsmanagement. I Musikprofilskolan är det mer accepterat och nästintill påbjudet att säga ifrån och vara ifrågasättande snarare än att vara konform. I Centralskolan skämtar eleverna återkommande om obildade som företrädesvis finns utanför musikklassrummets väggar, vilket skapar ett mer sammanhållet vi bland eleverna, ett ”vi som är bildade”. Samtidigt är humoristen en position som är mer tillgänglig för pojkarna i klassrummet, vilket skapar utrymme för kreativitet och att utmana normativa förväntningar i klassrummet. Självsäkerhet måste ibland Centralskolans elever maskeras för att inte riskera att falla över i skrytsamhet, en risk som inte återfinns alls bland eleverna i Musikprofilskolan. Att uttrycka sig rationellt och undvika spår av emotionalitet är väsentligt bland eleverna i Centralskolans musikklassrum, medan emotionella uttryck, då i synnerhet upprördhet och ilska, återkommer bland eleverna i Musikprofilskolan, något som tycks premiera pojkars möjlighet att få handlingsutrymme i deras ensemblespel.

    Sammantaget påverkar elevernas positionerande deras förutsättningar för undervisning i termer av kamratlärande, klassrumsmanagemen och garagebandsundervisning. Det är också min övertygelse att en bättre förståelse av vad som står på spel i elevernas positionerande i musikundervisningen skapar bättre förutsättningar att på allvar utmana och förändra maktstrukturer i klassrummet i syfte att skapa en mer jämställd och jämlik musikundervisning. För att uppnå detta tror jag att mer samtalsanalytiska angreppssätt kan vara fruktbara vilket inte heller används i så hög utsträckning tidigare inom det musikpedagogiska fältet.

    Den här avhandlingen har bland annat visat på skillnader i elevers positionerande i musikklassrummet beroende på i vilken grad musik står på spel för dem eller inte, i vilken kön har framträtt som en väsentlig kategori för elevernas positionerande. På motsvarande sätt vore det intressant att gå vidare med att studera elevers positionerande i olika musikklassrum i vilka positioner förknippade med exempelvis klass, etnicitet, sexualitet, funktionsvariation, religion aktualiseras.

  • 4.
    Persson, Mikael
    Royal College of Music in Stockholm, Department of Music Education.
    Effects of insecurity: Class and Gender at Stake in Secondary School Music Education2016In: Gender Equality Matters: Education , Intersectionality and Nationalism, Linköping: LiU-Tryck , 2016, p. 96-96Conference paper (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    In this paper I would like to present preliminary results from my ongoing PhD-project focusing creation of subjectivity in secondary school music education. The aim of this paper is to discuss construction of femininity in intersection with class regarding the use of different rhetorical resources available in different music classrooms. In particular I will pinpoint how the girls make use of insecurity and how this effects their possibilities to participate in musical activities. 

    During autumn 2014 I have been following the weekly music lessons in three classrooms in Stockholm and it's surroundings. The schools were strategically selected to represent maximum differentiation in the students socioeconomic background using the notion of symbolic capital resulting in three schools: a High end school, a Low end school and a Music profiled school.

    The lessons were documented with video camera, transcribed in great detail, and analyzed with concepts drawing from positioning theory, discursive psychology and conversation analysis focusing the rhetorical resources in the interactional work done among the pupils. 

    Insecurity appears to be a resource available for the girls in all three classrooms but with different effects. For girls in the high end school insecurity explicitly expressed by words is frequently followed by further musical activities. In the low end school insecurity, expressed by avoiding difficult tasks, limits the possibility to further practice. In the music school the use of insecurity also of risk of being positioned as nervous and problematic and can be understood as an obstacle for practicing difficult music tasks in ensemble practice.

  • 5.
    Persson, Mikael
    Royal College of Music in Stockholm, Department of Music Education.
    Inte bara musik.: Om elevers positionerande i grundskolans musikklassrum.2019Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    The aim of this dissertation is to study how positioning among students in the music classroom interplays with music teaching activities as practised in Swedish comprehensive schools. The study uses a videoethnographic technique for documenting interactions between students in two different music classrooms. The one is in a music profile school with students for whom music may be assumed to be important, the other is in a standard curriculum school with students who do not have any special relation to music. However, both schools recruit students who come from educated, economically stable homes in white middle class society in Sweden and thus share a similar background. The students’ interactions are transcribed in great detail and analysed using concepts from positioning theory, conversation analysis and discursive psychology.

    The results show great differences between the two music classrooms. In the Ordinary School, the dominant positions are conformity, humour, insecurity and rationality. In the Music Profile School the dominant positions are rebelliousness, seriousness, confidence and emotionality. In terms of gender, the Music Profile School classroom could be described as a predominantly masculine practice which diminishes the opportunity for students who wish to attain the position musician and at the same time express femininity.

    These differences in the students’ positioning affects the possibility for such music educational practices as peer-learning to take place. Differences in positioning also affect what work needs to be done in terms of classroom management.

    By focusing on how positions are achieved through interaction, rather than on what the positions consist of, I hope to open possibilities for the individual music teacher to become aware of which students are being favoured in his or her own classroom. I also hope that this research will help to promote change that could result in greater social justice in the music classroom. How this is to be done will, however, need to be the subject of future research.

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    Inte bara musik. Om elevers positionerande i grundskolans musikklassrum.
  • 6.
    Persson, Mikael
    Royal College of Music in Stockholm, Department of Music Education.
    Music as facilitating integration2020In: The topology of music education as a field of researches, policies and practices, 2020Conference paper (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    In this presentation I will present a newly started research which tries to find traces of integration within a project called Libravoice. The ambition with the project is to promote change in society by helping schools in socially segregated areas to develop a high-quality music education and to by using music to open up spaces for social interaction. The research focuses on what discourses dominates the students’ interactions before and after social encounters with the other through musical activities.

    Music is among musicians frequently described as a language that facilitates communication cross traditional language borders. Some musical projects, such as El Sistema, are presented as resources to promote social mobility in socially segregated areas. Yet other projects, such as Fargespill in Norway, regard music as a resource to promote democratic values such as a greater understanding of the other. Music, especially playing music together, is in other words assumed to facilitate the achievement of different social goals in society. It is also a well-known historical fact that music also can be used as a resource to promote all kinds of changes in society, not only the ones that we within current hegemonic discourses are regarded as desirable.

    Although, it is not quite clear what musical qualities that needs to be present in order for these changes to occur and also if and how this actually promotes an understanding of the other that actually promotes social inclusion rather than just reproducing difference. Projects such as the already mentioned El Sistema and Fargespill have been questioned in different studies. As an example, promoting change originating from difference could end up emphasizing the very difference itself. Integration could also be understood as a one-way movement rather than a meeting between differences which are others to each-other. El Sistema has for example been accused of trying to emphasize the ambition to promote social mobility as a resource to attract capital and assure its survival.

    As briefly presented, the Libravoice is a project financed a foundation distributing resources to projects which promote to integration through music. The project focuses on schools in socially segregated areas starting with a school in a suburb of Stockholm. The project then consists basically of two different parts. The first part is oriented towards increase the quality of the music education in the particular school and to increase the status of music as a subject among the teachers in the school. The second part is to create routines for recurrent musical events involving students from other schools to perform in public institutions yet unknown for the students, such as the Royal College of Music in Stockholm.

    The research I will present could be described as a minor ethnographical study following a choir-concert with students from two different schools. The first school is the socially segregated area which I will call the Lowtown school. The other school recruits’ students from another suburb with primarily a white, well established, middle-class, which I will call Smallville elementary. The material consists of fieldnotes from the practices and concerts and transcripts from focus group conversations with the students from before and after the concerts. This material will then be analyzed to unfold what discourses seems to be articulated among the students before, during and after the meeting with the other in the

    Abstract submission for paper presentation at NNMPF 2020 Format: Senior research paper with commentator Mikael Persson

    different schools. Theoretically the research is primarily based on a social constructionist position searching for what discourses are articulated and how these discourses relate to questions of integration in different ways.

    The material is collected but still not either transcribed or analyzed. Although I can indicate some preliminary results. In both schools the conversations among the students in both schools were oriented towards the musical performance in different ways. Afterwards the students from the Lowtown school continues to talk about the musical performance whereas the students from Smallville elementary rather talks about the meeting with the other. In the presentation I will further elaborate on this difference and others as they appear within the analysis.

  • 7.
    Persson, Mikael
    Royal College of Music in Stockholm, Department of Music Education.
    Music technology, instruments and gender production in music education2020In: The topology of music education as a field of researches, policies and practices, 2020Conference paper (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Gender is fruitfully analyzed in music pedagogical research as a socially constructed position. Originating from a socialconstructionist perspective language is in other words given great power when it comes to studying meaning of a phenomenon such as gender. A large and growing number of studies have shown how musical instruments, as well as music technology, are discursively gendered and that historical, cultural aspects are incorporated in things like technology and instruments, which assumably affects the student’s choices of instruments as well as how they collaborates with each other in different ensemble and music making situations. Also, in my own dissertation I applied this theoretical framework at large. In this presentation though, I want to discuss whether it could be helpful to use theory from a new-materialist perspective in order to, in more detail, discuss how musical instruments and music technology affects student’s possibilities to express and become gender in pop-ensembles and music making learning environments? 

     

    I will not argue against the value of an entirely social constructionist approach, but instead argue that a theoretical approach that help us understand music technology as well as musical instruments as part of a greater network of actors, to speak with Laour, could be helpful. Considering the possibility of agency in musical and non-musical objects and making collaborations between people and objects visible, could possibly help unfolding details that could be used as tools in order to change the music education to improve social inclusion in music education from a gender perspective. 

     

    Social Constructionist perspectives have by new-materialist scholars been criticized of ascribing language to much importance and neglecting everything else. “Language matters. Discourse matters. Culture matters. There is an important sense in which the only thing that does not seem to matter anymore is matter.” as Karen Barad puts it. In this paper I will apply a theoretical approach in which matter comes to matter as actors in a large network.

     

    In the presentation I will present material from my dissertation from different music education in secondary schools in Sweden and then reanalyze some of these situations drawing from different theoretical perspectives such as Karen Barad, Bruno Latour, Donna Haraway, Annemarie Mol and Jane Bennett. The material contains of video documentations of interactions between musicians playing and in other ways interacting in a music educational setting. Only some of the situations are selected in order to facilitate a primarily theoretical discussion about the fruitfulness of this approach at large.

    Results from former studies, applying a social constructionist perspective, such as music technology being primarily gendered as masculine rather than feminine could be confirmed also in this material. This could be seen indirectly by how music technology attracts boys to interact with microphones, PA systems, loudspeakers etc. Although, apart from this attraction in itself, the actual interaction with particular instruments affects the students’ possibilities to express themselves in different ways. Playing the electric guitar, sitting on the amplifier for example, makes it easier to adjust the volume. Being connected to the PA system, as for the keyboard player or the singer on the other hand, creates difficulties adjusting your volume. Adding the risk of creating an acoustic feedback, together with a tendency rather to increase rather than decrease the volume in order to create balance between the instruments, diminishes the possibilities for the singer to claim space when rehearsing.

    Some concluding remarks could be done from this. First and foremost, I find that focusing instruments as well as music technology is worth considering further research on in order to addressing questions of gender production in music education. Further, there is a need for further theoretical discussion about the status of discourses in a theoretical framework which at the same time have an ambition to assign instruments and music technology agency.

  • 8.
    Persson, Mikael
    Royal College of Music in Stockholm, Department of Music Education.
    Musical instruments and the doing of gender in music education2017In: Symposia IV: Questions and Dilemmas when Exploring Music Education and Gender in Scandinavian countrie, Göteborg: Göteborgs universitet, 2017, p. 13-13Conference paper (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    We already know that music instruments are gendered and that this affects the students’ choices of instruments. What is yet to be explored is how these instruments effects the production of gender in the actual classroom. The elaboration of material feminist theories opens up possibilities to study not only what musical instruments represents culturally or discursively, but also how these instruments are entangled in the production of gender in the music classroom. A more elaborated understanding of the relation between gender production and musical instruments could open for new ways of approaching the gender equality issue in music education.

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    fulltext
  • 9.
    Persson, Mikael
    Royal College of Music in Stockholm, Department of Music Education.
    Playing music as positioning: an intersectional analysis of gender and class in the secondary school music classroom2017In: ABSTRACTS PHD IN PROGRESS NNMPF 2017, Göteborg: Göteborgs universitet, 2017, p. 1-3Conference paper (Other academic)
    Download full text (pdf)
    fulltext
  • 10.
    Persson, Mikael
    Royal College of Music in Stockholm, Department of Music Education.
    Positionerande bland eleverna och möjlighet till estetiska erfarenheter2019In: NEÄL 2019: Aesthetic Experiences in Education, 11-13 nov, 2019Conference paper (Other academic)
    Abstract [sv]

    I den här presentationen kommer, med utgångspunkt i min avhandling i Musikpedagogik, argumentera för att elevers positionerande bör betraktas som väsentligt att studera för att på ett meningsfullt diskutera elevers delaktighet i estetiska praktiker i musikklassrummet.

    Materialet kommer från videodokumentation av elevers interaktioner i två olika musikklassrum årskurs åtta på högstadiet i Stockholmsområdet. De båda skolorna som är utvalda för studien är jämförbara beträffande klass och etnicitet, men skiljer sig åt genom att eleverna i Musikprofilskolan aktivt valt extra musik på schemat medan eleverna i Centralskolan valt skola företrädesvis utifrån närhetsprincipen. Materialet är transkriberat, analyserat och tematiserat med utgångspunkt vad som står på spel i elevernas interaktioner, hur de positionerar sig i relation till varandra samt vilka olika retoriska resurser som används för att realisera olika positioner.

    På ett övergripande plan visar resultaten att det inte, trots en gedigen mängd forskning som pekar på den intima relationen mellan identitetsskapande och musik, att elevernas interaktioner i hög utsträckning kretsar kring andra positioner så som konform/rebellisk, humoristisk/seriös, självsäker/osäker samt rationell/emotionell. Dessa positioner är diskursivt laddade med olika innebörder i de båda klassrummen och begränsar därmed elevernas möjligheter till delaktighet i olika estetiska praktiker i högstadiets musikundervisning.

  • 11.
    Persson, Mikael
    Royal College of Music in Stockholm, Department of Music Education.
    Positioning among students affecting the learning outcome.2019In: NOFA7​, Nordic Conference on​ Teaching and Learning in Curriculum Subjects at Stockholm University, 13-15 May, ​2019., 2019Conference paper (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    In this presentation I will, drawing from material from my recently finished doctoral thesis in Music pedagogy, argue that positioning among students’ is not to be regarded as a parallel, but an integrated, part of the learning process in the classroom.

    The material comes from a videoethnography, documenting interactions in two different music classrooms in upper secondary school in Sweden. The material is then being transcribed, analysed and thematised using Jonathan Potters question of what is at stake in the interactions among the students. By using the concept of positioning by Rom Harrée and Bronwyn Davies I have identified how every interaction also to some extent does positioning labour in which differences between the students as well as between the students and the teacher is made visible. A position in this sense is thereby not to be understood as a complete identity with a larger set of features, but is rather fragmental in its nature. Finally I have used the concept of rhetorical resources, as it is being used in both Conversation Analysis and the early Discursive Psychology, do try to grasp how the process of positioning actually is occurring.

    As I have done the analysis two major risks were detected. The first one is the tendency to regard the two positions available in every formal educational setting, the teacher and the student, as self-evidently meaningful in every interaction. Doing so could reduce important aspect of the interactions in the classroom. The other risk is to enter the analysis by regarding the subject matter as an important aspect in the students’ interactions, which does not seem to be the case. This is especially crucial in my case as the subject matter is music, which a large set of contemporary research on has been described as a central part of identity formations in youth cultures. Giving music primacy in the analysis, by focusing the relations to different instruments or musical genres as an example, would result in leaving important parts of the interactions unanalysed.

    To make my case I will present excerpts from my thesis showing how the students position themselves in regard to humour and seriousness as well as confidence and insecurity affects the way they engage in different activities in the music classroom which most probably affect the possible learning outcome.

  • 12.
    Persson, Mikael
    Royal College of Music in Stockholm, Department of Music Education.
    Positioning as a constant process.: Reproduction of and deviation from gendered power structures in the music classroom.2019Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In this paper I would like to discuss different ways to understand students’ agency in the music classroom in order to facilitate analysis of both deviation from and reproduction of gendered structures in the music classroom. In order to discuss this, I will present two different discourses available for the individual music teacher to make sense of both deviation from and reproduction of gendered structures within the music classroom. The first of these is derived from a market discourse, promoting an understanding of agency to infinite witch helps explaining deviation from gendered structures. The second one is rather theoretical and is derived primarily from post-structuralist thinkers such as Foucualt, Laclau and Mouffe and are rather pointing towards a rather narrow understanding of agency which is helpful to understand reproduction of gendered structures in the music classroom. I am persuaded that there is a need for a theoretical approach that completes both these tasks. Failing to do so will risk opening a space for two very extreme and unfortunate understandings of agency to gain ground among both scholars and among music teachers. There are many different ways to solve this issue, but I will argue that a combination of theoretical approaches from the fields of positioning theory, discursive psychology and conversation analysis could be helpful. In order to discuss these issues, I will start by using a situation from my own thesis. The theoretical approach is also described in my thesis.

  • 13.
    Persson, Mikael
    Royal College of Music in Stockholm, Department of Music Education.
    The intersection of gender and class in secondary school music education in Sweden2018In: / [ed] Lilli Mittner, Hilde Synnøve Blix, Tromsø: HSL Trykkeriet, UiT The Arctic University of Norway , 2018, p. 32-32Conference paper (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    In this presentation, I will discuss how different structural positions concerning gender and class may affect the students’ participation in musical activities in secondary school music education in Sweden. The research is part of my, soon to be finished, doctoral thesis in music pedagogy. The design could be described as a case study in which the cases represents differences regarding to social class. Each case has been analysed to find similarities and differences regarding what positions boys and girls accomplish in the classroom. My contribution to the discipline will primarily be to address the question of how differences in the students’ socioeconomic background, social class, intersects with gender, an intersection rarely addressed in music pedagogical research. I also hope to create a foundation to discussion differences created by the increasing segregation of the school system and the individual music teacher’s possibilities to compensate for the effects of this segregation.

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  • 14.
    Persson, Mikael
    et al.
    Royal College of Music in Stockholm, Department of Music Education.
    Hentschel, Linn
    Umeå Universitet.
    Humor, gender and creativity in music education2020In: The topology of music education as a field of researches, policies and practices, 2020Conference paper (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    In this paper we will discuss humor as a gendered resource which opens up spaces for creativity in music education. We will do so by re-analysing empirical material from our two doctoral dissertations focusing on music education in secondary schools in Sweden. 

    Humor is often presented as something positive when it comes to education. Humor has for example been pointed out as a resource to create motivation within school-subjects otherwise not regarded as interesting among students. Humor has also been proven fruitful for teachers in order to create a friendly environment and to balance teachers formal position with a more familiar position. In other words, humor seems, within education, to be constructed as a resource to accomplish different educational goals within the classroom. In this paper though, we will discuss difficulties to keep in mind when humor appears in students interactions within the music-classroom. In the following we will draw the attention to some themes we want to discuss which have become visible in our material. 

    When it comes to gender, humor does not seem to be a neutral resource. In studies conducted within the secondary school music-education, humor seems to be more frequently used to express masculinity. Students positioned as boys are also more expected to be humoristic and make jokes than students positioned as girls. Similarly, in research regarding the humor-business, humor seems to represent a masculine domain. Even if this is a hierarchical order that seems to change, it is a discourse that is still being reproduced and thus still have a possible explanatory power. Humor as a masculine domaine is in the material also apparent as students positioned as boys expressing humor are not being questioned, which is the case among students positioned as girls.

    Language creates binaries. These binaries are contextual and changes over time but are however inevitably producing positions in the particular context. Humor is in our material frequently constructed as the opposite to seriousity. This does not mean that making jokes could not be “serious business”, but rather that the distance to seriousity in itself could be used in interaction to create space, which we would like to discuss in terms of creativity. Making jokes in the different music classrooms can function as resources to create distance to seriousity. In other words, making jokes makes it possible to express yourself in otherwise not socially accepted ways without being criticized. When draped in humor, expressions such as sexism, violence, racism, homofobia etcetera could be articulated and yet not followed by criticism. Even if this could be understood as a somewhat negative way of using humor, it points towards the creative potential that comes with humor in social interaction. This kind of creativity is primarily connected to the positioning work that is being done in interactions. 

    Even creativity connected to musical expression is, following our material, facilitated by expressions of humor. Singing in different ways in order to make other people laugh is connected to breaking (and thus at the same time expressing) musical conventions in different contexts. Singing in a funny playful way can also be used as a didactic method to encourage pupils to sing, or as a positive approach during the rehearsal phases of musical processes in school. In secondary school music classrooms the demands from public policy to teach creativity in music is not seldomly done by letting students write songs. In our material we have studied an example in which the students are seriously engaged in expressing humor within their composing. We will argue that this kind of humor increases creativity. Attempting to be humoristic can in other words be very closely connected to creativity. 

    Humor could also be understood in negative terms, not in what it produces in terms of creativity in order to make a joke, but rather in what or who is the aim of the joke. Something or someone is always pointed out in jokes. Jokes have, in other words, a normative effect. In our material making jokes could be used to legitimize pointing out someone's mistakes for example, even if teasing is not socially accepted within the classroom. 

     

    Finally, these different aspects of humor combined creates different opportunities for musical creativity within music education. These differences are, we argue, important to consider when using humor as a didactic resource. 

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