"Many birds...and many sea shells are beauties in themselves...So also delineation a la grecque, foliage for borders or wall-papers, mean nothing in themselves; they represent nothing...and are free beauties. We can refer to the same class...in music phantasies, and in fact all music without words."
-Emanual Kant, Critique of Judgement
Obviously Kant viewed music without words as a certain kind of beauty, a beauty of the senses, but a beauty without meaning. This lead him to believe that music was not a fine art. I believe today a few people would heartily disagree with this idea. I actually have a friend going to DePauw university who is majoring in Music Education. She is currently studying Elgar's Enigma Variations and the meaning, or story, that he is trying to tell in music without words. True, music tends to evoke more emotions as opposed to critical thinking inspired by other 'fine arts', but there is still a valid thought process required to understand and make beautiful musical compositions. So, in my personal opinion, music can be considered a fine art, but maybe it's just really low on the totem pole of fine arts.
Thoughts? Opinions? Arguments?