Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Curriculum and Instruction

First Advisor

Seltzer-Kelly, Deborah

Second Advisor

McIntyre, John


The purpose of this study is to provide a detailed description of the aesthetic experience as it is encountered in music, and, in so doing, to develop an operational definition of aesthetic experience as it is understood and experienced by practitioners in relation to the phenomenon as it is found in the canon of literature. The following specific questions are addressed: first, how do philosophers and practitioners view aesthetic experience; what commonalities or differences do these views have; and what understandings can be gained through an examination of these theories? Second, when the views of practicing music teachers, philosophers and pedagogues are compared and analyzed, how do these align with Csikszentmihalyi's Flow State Theory? Finally, does Csikszentmihalyi's Flow State Theory provide a functional framework for aesthetic experience; how does the employment of this resolve the issues of communication; and does this allow for a clearer understanding of aesthetic experience?




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