The Pragmatic Influence of Music and Art
As disclosed by Flanagan, Martinez, and Cumsille (2011), culture is a unique identifier of a group of people that are of similar practices and share values, beliefs, and customs of their society. By virtue of sharing common practices and norms that are unanimously accepted in a community, it creates a culture within the community that is a guiding footprint for the people in the particular environment. Culture varies depending on the beliefs of the people in a certain area and also varies in comparison to other culture of other different groups (Moran, R., Abramson & Moran, S., 2014). A group associated on the basis of culture is referred to as a cultural group with most having a family relationship that extends widely to form a clan of people and eventually the community. The importance of culture is the harmony that it creates within the society and the law and order it achieves amongst a group of people with contrary ideologies. Not only does culture offer the society on how to deal with things that take place in their daily lives but also provides a footprint for the future generations that they need to adopt and borrow from the best practices.
Music in the Native American Culture
In the case of the Native American Culture, which was practiced in the early times by the indigenous settlers in America, there have been some of the practices and norms that have been passed down from one generation to another in the American society. In America, music and dance have been part of their occasional practice as most of the people in the country enjoy the pleasures that are brought with music and dance. Although the practices of the old days are constantly being modified to adapt to the changes in times, the origin of the songs and dance from the golden days when it was first appreciated are still being upheld. Music in the Native American societies begun as poems and recitals that were in form of stories being told of the things that were happening at that time.
As more of the new artists joined the scene for music and poetry, the songs have begun to be added some bit of tunes and rhyme to make them interesting to the listeners. Most of the music spoke of the developments in the society; the events that were taking place and the current issues of the time that were of concern to the people. Songs became a form of subtle way to send messages to a large number of people and influence their perceptions and behavior to react to the issues that were facing them. Additionally, music was used for ceremonies and parties in the old days a practice that still resonates among the people of today. Most events that are held today incorporate music to liven the parties and soothe the moods of the attendees.
Music in the New Era
Translating the culture of the Native Americans in music to the current times, it can be seen that most of the music being made today has a message that it intends to pass to the masses. Music has diversified to suit the preferences of the many Americans today due to the increased number of people listening to the music and the various categories that are available to choose from. Common practice in music that has been passed from generation to generation has been the tunes and beats that are incorporated with the singing of the artists. It has become a common practice for musicians to have the best instruments used to provide the tunes for their music, which has been a culture practiced since the early Native American times.
Most of the content in today’s music also adopts the style of the music of the old Native Americans by speaking of current issues that carry weight in the society and often addressing the injustices that take place. Shilliam (2015) notes that during the colonial era, most of the music that was made addressed the injustice of the colonial masters and spoke of the need to have freedom and free will. Such has been the message in music in the recent era with most of the music highlighting the injustices of race and gender as well as the increased violence that is being experienced in the society.
Art of the Native American Culture
Drawings and paintings are a part of the old culture from the Native Americans that is still being practiced to date. Arts that are drawn have a good feel to them as they carry emotion and a story behind them that can only be interpreted with the brushes of an artist (Bullot & Reber, 2013). Art in the Native American times was used as a tool of expression with artists who created the paintings and masterpiece works were among the respected members of the society for their craft. Not only was art seen as a beautiful presentation of thoughts in a picture or sculpture but also as a symbol of creativity and sharpness, which made most of the artists be considered as geniuses. Art was treasured in the olden days with most of the finest pieces of art being stored in the palaces and homes of the rich as a symbol of royalty and to add to the beauty of their premises.
Art is also appreciated in the modern cultures of today as it has the same significance of beauty and sophistication that it packed in the past era. Most of the art that is considered most valuable in the present society actually belongs to the artists of the past who are credited with being the best of their time and artists that ever existed. Art in the past era was quite remarkable simply due to the richness and elegance of the pieces of art that were being created at the time. Artists took their time to create works of art that have left a mark in the past and will continue to have the same effect in the future. Most of these art pieces are expensive in the millions of dollars with pieces of carvings, forging and paintings being the main masterpieces. As pointed out by Bloomfield and Childs (2013) art is a form of expression that creates a beautiful symbolic representation of someone’s thoughts put into an object or paper.
Influence of Art
The artist of today is exposed to more ideas and analogies that they can add to their work, unlike the traditional artists who had less of the ideas but had to go above and beyond with their imagination. Art has evolved with time to incorporate digital and abstract forms of art due to the availability of technology and equipment that is built to the specifications for artists. The materials for art that are used today are improved and better at performing at optimal levels in the event they are used by the artists. These improvements are as result of the need to have better quality artistic materials whether it is paintings or objects that will be appreciated like the earlier forms of art. Additionally, art has become a recognizable profession whereby most artists have been able to benefit from their craft financially. These benefits have given the artists a sense of perspective to focus their energies on what they do best.
The Native American cultures have given precedent to the cultures of the new generation referred to as the digital generation in the sense that it has provided a footprint to follow and realize benefits for both music and art. More artists can depend on music to provide for themselves and the people of the modern world have come to appreciate the importance of music and art in the America. The adoption of cultures of the Native Americans has influenced a bold approach to the presentation of issues and the confidence in the articulation of injustices that are happening in America. With the evolution of music and art abiding by the roots of the golden era, the works of artists are increasingly being recognized and given appreciation like the Native American cultural works. The society benefits as a whole by instilling the cultural behavior, norms, and practices to their present situation and it acts as a guiding principle that has been proven over the ages. As Boyd, Richerson and Henrich (2011) assert that cultures bring people together and it is a beneficial tool to the society that is constantly growing from one generation to another.
Bloomfield, A., & Childs, J. (2013). Teaching integrated arts in the primary school: Dance, drama, music, and the visual arts. Routledge.
Boyd, R., Richerson, P. J., & Henrich, J. (2011). The cultural niche: Why social learning is essential for human adaptation. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 108(Supplement 2), 10918-10925.
Bullot, N. J., & Reber, R. (2013). The artful mind meets art history: Toward a psycho-historical framework for the science of art appreciation. Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 36(02), 123-137.
Flanagan, C., Martínez, M. L., & Cumsille, P. (2011). Civil societies as cultural and developmental contexts for civic identity formation. Bridging cultural and developmental approaches to psychology: New syntheses in theory, research and policy, 113-37.
Moran, R. T., Abramson, N. R., & Moran, S. V. (2014). Managing cultural differences. Routledge.
Shilliam, R. (2015). The black Pacific: Anti-colonial struggles and oceanic connections. Bloomsbury Publishing.