chapter  1
Musica Practica Compared to Aesthetic Speculations
Pages 18

This chapter describes how music as we know it today changed from being respected as a matter-of-fact social praxis serving a variety of everyday social needs, doings, and uses-musica practica-to a rarefied theory of ‘fine art’ based on aesthetic theories that arose in the mid-eighteenth century on rational foundations inherited from the seventeenth-century Age of Reason. Of course, as shall be recapped from time to time, despite this aesthetic rationale and the social rite of the public concert that it led to, music in the world today-including concert music-is still always praxial.† But its praxial attributes and values get almost entirely set aside in schools and universities by the dominance of the development, in 1750, of ‘modern’ aesthetic theories (explained later).