Nykymusiikki ja yhteiskunta

Tutkimus suomalaisten säveltäjien ajattelusta 2000-luvun alussa


  • Juha Torvinen


This article explores the relationship between music and society through analyzing the thoughts of Finnish contemporary composers. The article is based on a survey targeted on the members of two Finnish composers’s societies: The Society of Finnish Composers and Ears Open society. The potential amount of respondents was ca. 220, and there were total of 71 responses well representing the population of composers. The results of the survey were analyzed and interpreted according to four main themes: 1) the social history of music and composing as parts of society at large, 2) musical works as sociologically conditioned entities, 3) composers’s social activity as private persons, and 4) the historicality of aesthetic views concerning composing. According to this research, most contemporary composers consider music and composing activities without any necessary relationship to social, sociological or political themes and often favor formalist, aesthetic and composition-technical aspects in their work. However, composers of a younger generation seem to be, according to this research, notably more interested in dealing with sociologically burning topics in their work. At the same time, younger composers are more eager to work among many musical genres in comparison to their older colleagues. Most of the respondents think that musical works can offer an alternative or a critical viewpoint to social and political issues. However, their views differ regarding to how exactly music can offer such a viewpoint or whether contemporary art music is capable of providing such a critical platform at all. As private persons, Finnish composers seem to be socially and politically as active as an average Finnish citizen, but they disagree on to what extent composers should be socially and politically active. Generally speaking, the respondents of the survey do not call for more explicit social awareness for composers and their works. However, they do not in any significant degree claim that music should avoid it, either. The socio-politically autonomous (or marginalized) nature of contemporary art music is largely taken for granted. Nevertheless, the overall situation among composers seems to be changing towards a more pronounced social and genre awareness.






Torvinen, J. (2020). Nykymusiikki ja yhteiskunta: Tutkimus suomalaisten säveltäjien ajattelusta 2000-luvun alussa. Musiikki, 46(2-3), 8–36. Noudettu osoitteesta https://musiikki.journal.fi/article/view/97146