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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter Mouton August 19, 2020

Another Approach to Musical Interpretation

Musical gesture in the perspective of Symbol Interaction Theory

Hao Ding
From the journal Chinese Semiotic Studies


Music is neither a construction of pitches nor a linear arrangement of vocal parts, but rather an energetic shaping through time that integrates articulation, harmony, melody, and rhythm. Music expresses a kind of gesture in the dimension of sounds. In most cases, musical expressions, compared to linguistic expressions, are more like a state of motion or a behavior of sounds originating from physical sensations. Musical gesture can interpret the emotional expression and meaning of music from a perspective that is closer to the nature of music. Such an interpretation is not constrained by the traditional analysis of form and content, self-discipline and heteronomy, subjectivity and objectivity. It is more about how to stimulate the sensory systems to join in and understand the behavior and contents of music expressions in order to synthesize the meaning of music in different dimensions.


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Published Online: 2020-08-19
Published in Print: 2020-08-26

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