“Circles,” from his first series (1841), is one of my favorite Emerson essays. While the gendered language and the Romantic search for the unattainable and infinite certainly date it, his ideas about change as a constant, that “every ultimate fact is only the first of a new series,” has inspired me over the years through the many remarkable changes in our profession. “Our life is an apprenticeship to the truth,” writes Emerson, “that around every circle another can be drawn; that there is no end in nature, but every end is a beginning; that there is always another dawn risen on mid-noon, and under every deep a lower deep opens.” Emerson challenges us to be cognizant of and a participant in change’s continuum.
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The College Music Society promotes music teaching and learning, musical creativity and expression, research and dialogue, and diversity and interdisciplinary interaction. A consortium of college, conservatory, university, and independent musicians and scholars interested in all disciplines of music, the Society provides leadership and serves as an agent of change by addressing concerns facing music in higher education.