Concepts of Music and Copyright

Concepts of Music and Copyright

How Music Perceives Itself and How Copyright Perceives Music

Edited by Andreas Rahmatian

Copyright specialists have often focused on the exploitation of copyright of music and on infringement, but not on the question of how copyright conceptualises music. This highly topical volume brings together specialists in music, musicology and copyright law, providing a genuinely interdisciplinary research approach. It compares and contrasts the concepts of copyright law with those of music and musical performance. The contributors discuss the notions of the musical work, performance, originality, authorship in music and in copyright, and co-ownership from the perspective of their own disciplines. The book also examines the role of the Musicians’ Union in the evolution of performers’ rights in UK copyright law, and, in an empirical study, the transaction costs theory for notice-and-takedown regimes in relation to songs uploaded on YouTube.

Chapter 3: Creativity and possessive interests

Martin Parker Dixon

Subjects: law - academic, cultural heritage and art law, intellectual property law


Given that it is usually the business of art to make something, theories and claims relating to creativity could with every good reason start with reflection on the nature of the thing being made. In this chapter the author picks up a line of thought from Jean-Paul Sartre: it might be that fundamentally the artist makes artworks in order to possess them; to have not only a thing but also to have the work they ‘put into’ the object (be it constructive work, emotional work, spiritual work, etc.). The chapter will demonstrate that we can suspend speculation about creativity and address instead the experience of possessing, asking what claims are being made to substantiate that possession? Consequently talk of ‘creative process’ amounts to a special manner of making persuasive or compelling possessive claims with regard to an artwork. If possessive claims are suspended, an alternative picture of the creative process appears. Keywords: creativity; possession; moral rights; Sartre; Heidegger; four causes

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