10th issue of the European Journal of Philosophy in Arts Education


  • Ketil Thorgersen




It is winter and Christmas and new year is approaching where I live in Sweden. For me personally, the last months have been blessed as I have had the opportunity to be on parental leave for my little baby boy. The only work related task I have done since June is to try to keep up with editing EJPAE and participate in a book translation project. Every hour, minute, and second of the rest of the time has been filled with becoming in synergy with a small person growing into the world. Babies develop so quickly that the tasks of education becomes very prominent: To encourage, to facilitate, to see and recognize, to correct to learn ourselves etc. It also becomes very prominent how much fun music can be – and how reading and acting can create spaces for understanding and growth. As a teacher educator in music and the arts, and editor of a journal of philosophy of education and the arts, this direct application of the ideas, ideals and thoughts that drive our fields is not always this close. It is therefore with a newly recognized gratefulness I welcome all you readers to this issue that contain interesting and important insights into learning and the arts.

This issue of EJPAE contain more articles than any previous issue. I interpret this as a sign that EJPAE is getting more known and also gaining respect among scholars in the relevant fields. This time we can present authors from Scotland, the Netherlands, Norway and Sweden, representing the fields visual art, art history, language, dance and music.

The first article in this 10th issue of EJPAE provides interesting tools for thinking about arts education in a broad sense. Miranda Anderson from the University of Edinburgh dives into a cognitive framework called 4E in the article 4E Cognition and the Mind-Expanding Arts. Anderson argues that there are several benefits for arts education to apply a 4E framework on the teaching. 4E refers to embodied, enactive, embedded, and extended cognition and is based on recent cognitive and brain research. She combines this framework with phenomenological philosophy and a discussion of how imagination is of fundamental value to both the arts and for the human as a species. The argument centres around a particular exhibition that exemplifies how imagination and the arts are vital to understanding and interacting with the world.

The second article comes from the Netherlands and is unusually close to empirical education for EJPAE. Starting from an idea of commoning in an action research project situated in a higher education visual arts programme, Frederiek Bennema from Hanze University of Applied Sciences constructs an argument for Artistic Educational Commoning (AEC). The idea is to evolve educational activities as creative co-constuctive learning arenas rather than a knowledge-factory. Bennema argues that such an approach to education can be beneficial in creating a higher degree of democratic and non-hieararchical spaces for learning.

The third article is by Cecilia Ferm Almqvist and Linn Hentschel from Sweden, Södertörn University and Umeå University. The article Lived time in “relay-method” based arts education – sharing the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child as an example, employs a phenomenological theoretical framework to discuss how perception of time is vital in arts education. The themes they discuss are: lived time in meaningful arts education, lived time as diminishing or disappearing in aesthetic pedagogy, lived time and artworks in aesthetic pedagogy, and lived time as didactic frame in aesthetic pedagogy.

Synnøve Myklestad from Norway and Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences is the author of the fourth article in this issue. Her article The Pedagogue and the Poetic - Kristeva and the Quest for Singularity in Education presents an interesting argument that the concepts semiotization and transubstantiation can be utilized to counter neo-liveral tendencies of effectivisation. In line with what several other articles in this issue argues, Myklestad warns against a view of education as mere fulfilment of standards. Instead, education should encourage exploring and experiences.

From Sweden, Marie-Helene Zimmerman Nilsson and Jo Smedley present the last article in this issue. The article discusses how musical knowledge and skills can be acquired and how they can have a positive impact on various areas of life. It also examines the relationship between musical instrumental learning and reflective practice, and the role of self-regulation in music learning. The text suggests that musical skills may influence the way that learners engage with and manage information, and that this experience may enhance their broader knowledge management skills. It also suggests that there is a lack of research on the possible links between musical knowledge and broader information management skills, and calls for further investigation in this area.

The five articles are held together by a desire to connect musical learning to larger issues such as society, personal development etc. All articles also strives at being critical towards narrow-minded views of arts education. I hope the articles will give you as much pleasure as they gave me. ENJOY!

Ketil Thorgersen

Editor-in-Chief Stockholm December 14th 2022