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Let Our Ordered Lives Confess: Nurturing Symphonic Souls in a Chaotic Culture


Ken Myers


Moral philosopher Alasdair MacIntyre has argued that our age is one ”after virtue,” characterized by fragmentation that makes it impossible to discern moral coherence. In musical terms, we live in a tonal world of chaotic dissonance. In the late 1960s, composer Arvo Pärt (b. 1935),  became aware that the 20th century’s repudiation of traditional ideas of harmony had brought music to a dead end. Pärt’s project to rediscover the order of melody and harmony provides a model for educators to guide students back toward the perception of order.