Postmodern Music Therapy
A Proposed Paradigm Shift Away from the Medical Model of Disability and Toward an Intersectional Understanding
Keywords:postmodernism; critical race theory; critical disability theory; critical gender theory; critical queer theory
Postmodern music therapy is an approach to music therapy that defines itself in diametric opposition to modernist, or medical-model, music therapy. Where modernist music therapy ignores power dynamics and assumes itself to be value neutral, postmodern music therapy is concerned with power dynamics between client, therapist, and broader society. Postmodern music therapy is based on the theories of Bradley Lewis: Lewis (2006) believes that a postmodern psychiatry (or as he calls it, postpsychiatry) will be more aware of politics and social structures in general and will move toward democratization. This article proposes a postmodern music therapy in parallel to postpsychiatric ideas and ideals. Further, the article explores the intersectional nexus between postmodern music therapy and critical race, disability, queer, and feminist studies.
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