Analysis Of Mo Tzu's Against Music

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In Mo Tzu’s Against Music, the audience learns that music is detrimental to society. He first starts out by claiming the responsibility of a benevolent man, or women is to eliminate what is ruinous to society. Besides this, a benevolent man’s obligation is not to just take his only interest and add it, but also decide based on the common good. For instance, plenty of people of a higher class, rulers, and ministers may enjoy music, and all it entails, very much; but, it offers few to none benefits for the common man, thus people must stop making it. Mo Tzu concluded that the common man should not pay taxes for something that only benefits a small proportion of the population. With this in mind, people might also note that Mo Tzu was expressing …show more content…
He states that the youth, both male, and female, would be used by the wealthy to help with the music. Due to the fact, that people of higher ages, elderly, do not have a “keen” ear for it. However, if the wealthy use young women and men for this job they will take them away from their responsibilities. Back then, the values of the society differed from the values people have today; they valued providing food or shelter. Meaning that young men should work in the field, plowing, and planting and women’s role is in the house, weaving, and spinning. According to Mo Tzu, any activity that prevents aforementioned from happening prevents the people from making food and clothing, therefore music he concludes, “Making music is wrong.” Although there may be truth in this, he misses the point that employment provides individuals the ability to provide for their family, or at least contribute to it. He has a point that employment to make music, which has no benefit for most the population, is a little usual. However, it sure reaps the same benefits; people can still use the money from their job to purchase food, clothing, and shelter. Here, it is fine to use people to make music because it does not hinder society. In fact, now society has changed and an overwhelming majority of people no longer do that. Over time, people performed jobs that do not contribute to …show more content…
Later on in his writing, he states “music interferes with [the various duties of the world].” Then claims music will interfere with the affairs of the government because music will prevent people from appearing to court early, hearing suits, attending to government affairs, etc. If this is true, then people should not make music because nothing should get in the way of the running of the government because it may end in “the state [becoming] disordered.” Likewise, if Mo Tzi is right and music affects different industries then people it should not make music. However, some people may try to refute this by stating that music makes people more productive: “Music is effective in raising efficiency” (Fox). However, these studies were done way after the time Mo Tzu’s time, so we cannot apply them—society has changed, people have changed. Based on the reading Against Music, the definition of music now differs from the one back then; Music back then involved dancing, eating, and drinking a significant amount of alcohol. It was a more like an event, not a singular

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