Life-giving music. A qualitative study of music, youth and health

Project leader:
Hege Bjørnestøl Beckmann

Project period:
2008 – 2014

Research centre:
CREMAH

Approach:
Research

Topic:
Music psychology, Music and health

Fellowship project
Ph.D. in Music Therapy

The project will examine the connections between adolescents’ daily use of music and their understanding of its affect upon their quality of life or in a broad sense, their experience of health.

The last decade’s technological advances have increased the availability of music. With portable stereos like MP3-players, iPods and smartphones, and music libraries such as Spotify, WiMP og iTunes, we have access to all music whenever we want. Adolescents are, more than most, up to date on technical innovations, and many young people are surrounded by music in their daily activities (Vaage, 2013). In the words of Swedish music researcher Carin Öblad (2000, s. 41), music exists in young people’s lives ‘like the air they breathe’.

Music is no longer just a leisure activity. It also has an important symbolic function. Further, music has more influence on several social and psychosocial fields than before. Resent publications within youth research indicates that a large number of current adolescents struggle with physical or mental health issues (Mykletun et al., 2009; Samdal et al., 2009). There is a variety of explanations for this, but most frequently the causes are connected to non-material threats to health, such as a lack of fellowship, faith, meaning and hope (Fløttum, 2013; Fugelli, 1998). Even if present adolescents perform better and are more forwardlooking than before, scientist are concerned about their mental health (Frøyland et al., 2013). On the basis of the outlined topic area, the present thesis will examine the connections between adolescents’ daily use of music and their understanding of its affect upon their quality of life or in a broad sense, their experience of health.

PhD dissertation

Life-giving music. A qualitative study of music, youth and health is available through NMH Brage.



Last updated: 6. January 2017