(Pre-)Scripted Creativity: An Examination of the Creativity Movement in Spain’s Contemporary Music Education Literature


  • Antía González-Ben University of Wisconsin-Madison




Creativity, Music education, Spain, Critical discourse analysis.


Creativity is a pervasive topic in current discourses on music education inSpain. Creativity is commonly seen as universal. Also, the construct is oftenseen as entirely positive and as a desirable personality trait. This paper challengesthese premises. It unpacks creativity’s contingency as a cultural constructattached to a particular set of ideas and values, and it examines thisnotion as part of a particular regime of truth. The paper begins by contextualizingthe Spanish creativity movement within music education and bydelineating the socio-political and economic coordinates that surrounded itsemergence in contemporary Spain. Then, the paper approaches creativity asa pedagogical object, and it explores this construct’s ambivalent associationwith long-standing tropes about curriculum design and the social role ofeducation. Discourses on creativity in Spanish music education ultimatelycontribute to the fabrication of an ideal type of student and, by extension,to the «creation» of a particular kind of Spanish citizen. The paper ends byexamining potential dissonances between creativity’s hoped-for outcomesand its actual effects.


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Author Biography

Antía González-Ben, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Antía González Ben is a Ph.D. student at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She earned a Bachelor’s in Elementary Music Education (‘09) and a Master’s in Social Pedagogy (‘11) at the University of Santiago de Compostela, Galicia, Spain. In 2013, she earned a Master’s of Science in Curriculum and Instruction with a thesis that examined issues of multicultural music education in Galician textbooks. Antía is currently conducting preliminary research for her dissertation, which will potentially investigate international schools’ music education curricula from a socio-cultural perspective.