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date: 24 February 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This article explores a distinctive way of thinking about and practicing music education, one that has been implemented for more than two thousand years throughout Chinese history. Chinese music education has traditionally been conceived in terms of ethical education—of cultivation of character and disposition rather than development in performing technique or musical knowledge. Music was considered an indispensable part of general education in ancient China, being one of the six basic subjects in the education of youth during and around the time of Confucius. The discussion considers the concept of music as a means of cultivating virtuous dispositions in Chinese literati legacy, as exemplified in the Yue Ji and practiced specifically in the tradition of the guqin, a seven-string zither-like instrument.

Keywords: Chinese music education, Yue Ji, guqin, Chinese music history, character cultivation

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