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PhD Student in Philosophy, CUNY Graduate Center

John Dyck is from the Canadian prairies. He grew up in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, during the Oilers' hockey dynasty and completed his undergraduate degree and his M.A. at the University of Manitoba, in Winnipeg.

He's a PhD student at the CUNY Graduate Center. He works primarily in aesthetics and philosophy of art, but he's also interested in value theory, normativity, and ethics. His research in aesthetics pertains to two topics: artistic normatively and the philosophy of music. In his dissertation, he develops a new account of aesthetic value.

He believes aesthetic value is rooted in our commitments to aesthetic practices. He also co-wrote a paper with Matt Johnson in which they explain why it's okay to like bad art.

His master's thesis was on the history and ontology of Western fine art music, and this has morphed into a view about music more generally. He has written on an ideal of compliance in music practice and philosophy of music, on the distinction between music and sound art, and whether space can literally be a musical element. (He argues that it can be.) These three projects are unified by an attempt to show that music is rooted in culture, not in an innate sense, and that musical hearing is continuous with ordinary auditory perception.


  • –present
    PhD Student in Philosophy, CUNY Graduate Center