Proceedings paper

 

CHILDREN'S COLLABORATIVE MUSIC COMPOSITION: COMMUNICATION THROUGH MUSIC

 

Louise Morgan, University of Wales College of Medicine

David Hargreaves, University of Surrey, Roehampton

Richard Joiner, Open University

 

 

 

INTRODUCTION

Since the introduction of the National Curriculum (1988) in schools in England and Wales, it is now required that all children study music up to the age of 14, and composition forms a large part of this. Composition is defined very broadly in the primary school and refers to the briefest musical utterances, as well as to more sustained inventions. This paper reports three studies of children's collaborative music composition.

Collaborative work among children has been the focus of much research since the initial writings of Piaget and Vygotsky. Essentially, it was claimed that children working in pairs or groups on any kind of task can achieve a higher level of understanding than any one child could achieve alone (see Doise & Palmonari, 1984). Research has since sought to explain what is learned through social interaction and how the interaction takes place.

Research of this kind is vast, and has looked at children working collaboratively on a wide range of scientific tasks, such as mathematical problem solving, logical reasoning and so on (e.g. Tudge & Rogoff, 1989). Little of the research to date has examined the role of peer collaboration in creativity, where goals are less clearly defined and measures are more ambiguous. It could be that factors found to be responsible for productivity in the science-based tasks differ from those responsible for productivity in creative tasks.

Much of the previous (science-based) peer collaboration research suggests that the most important element of task activity in groups is the dialogue among group members (e.g. Tolmie et al, 1993). The recurring theme is one of sharing ideas verbally, arguing through alternatives, and providing justifications for accepted and rejected solutions. That is, the more of this type of talk that occurs among collaborating children, the greater their productivity. It is suggested here that in collaborative music composition tasks, rather than discussing their ideas, the children would prefer to try their ideas out directly on the musical instruments, and thus somehow communicate with each other through the music itself.

Possible support for this hypothesis comes from studies of computer based problem solving tasks. Pheasey & Underwood (1986) and others have found evidence of peer facilitation effects but low levels of verbal interaction. Children working on a computer based task were found to produce higher quality work when they collaborated with a partner than if they worked alone, but they did not appear to be sharing their ideas verbally. Subsequent analyses revealed that the children were trying their ideas out directly on the computer, thus they were said to be communicating with actions rather than words. It is suggested that children working on music composition tasks will work in the same way.

The gender composition of the collaborating group is reported by previous researchers to be a salient factor (e.g. Underwood, 1994). A detailed examination of the gender issues is beyond the scope of the present paper, therefore this paper will consider only two key issues: firstly, the previous finding that in mixed gender groups, boys tend to dominate over girls; and secondly, that single gender groups tend to achieve better results than mixed gender groups. It should be noted that all of these findings come from studies of science-based tasks and it is important to examine these issues in relation to creative tasks.

To summarize, the overall aim of the present research was to examine what factors within a group of children lead to the production of a good music composition. Particular attention was paid to the amount of verbal interaction, and to whether the children communicated their ideas through the music, and if so was this form of communication important for group productivity. Also of interest was how the gender composition of the group affected the composition process and the quality of the work produced.

The assessment of quality in music composition is a tricky area. It is argued that assessment procedures need to be task specific and should be tailored to meet the needs of the researcher and the demands of the task. Thus, procedures to assess the compositions are discussed within the context of each of the studies. For a detailed discussion on these issues see Morgan (1998) and Webster (1992).

Three studies are reported here that differ only in the nature of the task given to the children. The first task was a representational composition task, in which children were asked to compose a piece of music to represent the events of a story. The second task was a formal music composition task and required children to compose a piece of music 'that has a beginning, middle and end'. The third study used an emotion-based composition task, and required the children to compose a piece of music 'that will make me happy'. For a detailed discussion on these three types of task, see Barrett (1995).

 

STUDY 1

A TRIP TO THE SEASIDE: A REPRESENTATIONAL MUSIC COMPOSITION TASK

 

METHOD

Eighty-eight children aged 9-10 were put into groups of 4 of varying gender compositions. The music composition stimulus was a story about a family's trip to the seaside, which is presented in full below. The children were asked to work together to produce a series of sounds or music to represent the events of the story. They were given four musical instruments; a xylophone, a drum, a triangle and a cabasa. It was ensured beforehand that they had prior experience of this kind of task, and of these kinds of instruments. The children were told that they would have 20 minutes to work on the task and they were videotaped throughout. They were also told that they would be asked to give a final performance of their composition for the video camera.

 

A TRIP TO THE SEASIDE

"Mum, Dad, Ben and Sarah are all in the car, travelling to the seaside. The children are very excited about their day out and chatter all the way. Dad parks the car and Mum unloads the picnic from the boot. Ben and Sarah take off their shoes and rush through the sand into the water. The children shriek as the icy water laps up against their ankles. Dad throws a ball to Ben, who drops it. A dog snatches the ball and runs with it along the beach. Dad chases the dog, grabs the ball and throws it back to Sarah. Mum tells the others that the picnic is ready and the family tucks into sandwiches and cakes. After their lunch, the children play in the sea once more before Dad shouts that it is time to go. Everyone is very tired and Ben and Sarah fall asleep in the back of the car. Mum yawns, and Dad switches on the radio to keep himself awake for the journey."

 

Process variables

 The collaborative working period was assessed independently of the performance of the finished composition. Several aspects of the children's interaction during the working period were timed with a stopwatch.

Total talk for each child was sub-divided into task directed talk, time spent reading the story aloud, off task talk and interaction with the researcher.

Task directed talk was defined as any talk directed towards the successful completion of the task. This type of talk included the presentation of ideas and suggestions to other group members, the discussion of alternatives and the justifications of accepted and rejected solutions. Task directed talk was therefore assumed to be indicative of attempts to share the social reality of the problem-solving situation.

Read was simply the time spent reading the story aloud. This was included because it comprised a large part of the child's talk time, and while it was task directed by nature, it was not seen as actively sharing one's ideas with other group members.

Off task talk was defined as any talk not directed towards completion of the task, suggesting time out from actively working to complete the task.

Interaction with the researcher was any time spent talking to the researcher, including questions of help.

Similarly, there were two sub-variables of total time playing the instruments: task directed play and exploratory play.

Task directed play was defined as play directed towards completion of the task and towards other members of the group. This definition included the presentation of ideas directly on the instruments, and was viewed as an alternative means of sharing the social reality.

Exploratory play refers to the exploration of the sound materials, and was seen as being directed towards the individual, or 'playing for oneself'. This type of play was not seen as contributing to a mutual understanding of the task, and did not move the group closer towards establishing shared understanding or towards the completion of the task.

To assess the possible effects of the gender composition of the collaborating group in terms of verbal and musical interaction and subsequent group performance, the type of group in which the children were placed was coded as consisting of all boys, all girls or mixed gender.

Assessment of the Compositions: The Selectivity Rating Scale

A five-point rating scale was developed to assess the quality of the compositions. The scale provides guidelines to assist the raters in their marking of the compositions and is presented in full in below. Three independent raters used the scale to give each of the compositions a mark out of 5. The group score was therefore the mean mark given by the three raters.

The essence of this scale is the extent to which the children display selectivity or discrimination of both the actions and events within the story, and of the instruments chosen to represent these. There are many actions and events within the story that could be represented by an infinite number of musical sounds. The children must then select a variety of actions or events from the story and decide how to illustrate these with the available musical apparatus. In this way, groups of children who score well on the rating scale will be those who demonstrate a certain degree of musical thinking, apparent in this context through the selection and rejection of sounds. This is based largely on Swanwick's (1979) three proposed criteria for attempting a definition of music, namely selection, relation and intention. For a full discussion of the development of this scale see Morgan (1998).

Rating Scale

Score 1:

All sound effects* are played, with no evidence of selection or discrimination. Sound effects are stereotyped. No evidence of decision making as to which sound should represent which event or action within the story. No apparent organisation.

Score 2:

More selective with a sense of unity. One or two instruments have been chosen to represent certain elements of the story. The sound effects tend to focus on events, rather than actions, and are still very stereotyped. Little structural control and the impression of spontaneity without development of ideas.

Score 3:

Further selection of events/actions and of instruments is apparent. Sounds become more appropriate and more inventive. Evidence of a structure to the finished piece.

Compositions still rather predictable.

Score 4:

More selective still. Less narrative. Clear beginning and ending.

Score 5:

High level of selection and discrimination, of both the events/actions chosen and of the instruments. Clear beginning, middle and ending. A more abstract level than previously.

Equal representation of events, actions, emotions, etc.

*The use of the term 'sound effects' is for descriptive clarity only. At no time at all was it suggested to the children that they work on producing a series of sound effects. For the children, the emphasis was put on the transformation of elements within the story into a musical medium.

 

RESULTS

Verbal and musical interaction

Table 1 shows significant relationships between group productivity, as determined by the selectivity rating scale, and task directed talk (r=.47, p<.05) and task directed play (r=.44, p<.05). There were no significant relationships between group productivity and the time spent reading the story aloud, off task talk, interaction with the researcher or exploratory play. A t-test revealed that there was significantly more talk than play (t=2.30, p<.05).

 

Pearson Correlations Between the Process Variables and the Group Score

Table 1

 

Group score (N=22)

Process variables

r

p

Task directed talk

.47

.01

Task directed play

.44

.02

Exploratory play

-.29

ns

Off task talk

-.23

ns

Interaction with researcher

-.16

ns

Reading story

.22

ns

 

Gender

Table 2 suggests that the all-girl groups achieved the highest marks for their finished compositions (mean 3.60), followed by the mixed gender groups (mean 3.30), then the all-boy groups (mean 3.14). These differences were not significant.

Group Score by Group Type

Table 2

 

Mean (seconds)

(S.D.)

F

p

 

Boys

Girls

Mixed

df(2,19)

 

Group score*

3.14

(.80)

3.60

(.74)

3.29

(.76)

2.46

.09

* maximum score = 5

 

In the mixed gender groups, a series of t-tests revealed that the girls engaged in significantly more total talk than the boys (t=2.02, p<.05).

 

DISCUSSION

Verbal and musical interaction

An important finding in this study was the significant relationship between task directed play and group productivity. This suggests that the children were communicating their ideas through the music, and that this type of communication was important for group productivity.

A significant relationship was also found between group productivity and task directed talk, and there was significantly more talk than play. It is suggested here that this may be due to the nature of the task. The stimulus was highly verbal and the children's ideas may be adequately expressed verbally. An alternative task is necessary to study this further.

Gender

In this study, the girls in the mixed gender groups talked significantly more than the boys. This finding is in contrast to those of previous peer collaboration research, where boys tend to dominate over girls. A possible explanation for this comes from status theories (e.g. Lee, 1993), which suggest that if a task is perceived as being within the domain of expertise of one particular gender, that gender will dominate in a mixed gender setting. The previous peer collaboration research has focused on science-based tasks which could be perceived as being more 'for boys'. Music in schools is perhaps seen as more 'for girls', and may help explain female verbal domination in the present study (Archer, 1992).

 

 

STUDY 2

COMPOSE A PIECE OF MUSIC THAT HAS A BEGINNING, MIDDLE AND END: A FORMAL MUSIC COMPOSITION TASK

It was suggested that the children's ideas in study 1 might have been adequately expressed verbally given the verbal nature of the task. The task in study 2 was a formal music composition task that required the children to work directly with musical structure and form, and moved away from the direct representation of external events. It was proposed that with a formal composition task, musical interaction will be related to group productivity and that verbal interaction will show no relationship.

The two key gender issues are again examined here: whether one gender consistently takes control of the task verbally and non-verbally in the mixed gender groups, and the relative productivity of single and mixed gender groups.

METHOD

Seventy two children aged 9-11 were taken from a second primary school. The same procedure used in study 1 was used in study 2. The only difference was the composition task. In this study, the children were asked to work together to compose a piece of music that has a beginning, middle and end.

 

Assessment of the compositions

In this study, a series of validated rating scales developed by Hargreaves, Galton & Robinson (1996) were used to assess the compositions, and these are presented below. Each of the compositions was rated by three independent raters. The group score was the mean total awarded by the three raters.

 

UNEVOCATIVE

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

EVOCATIVE

DULL

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

LIVELY

UNVARIED

(repetitive, limited)

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

VARIED

(wide ranging)

UNORIGINAL

(safe, conventional)

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

ORIGINAL

(imaginative, innovative)

INEFFECTIVE

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

EFFECTIVE

UNINTERESTING

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

INTERESTING

UNAMBITIOUS

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

AMBITIOUS

(adventurous)

DISJOINTED

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

FLOWING

(articulate)

AESTHETICALLY UNAPPEALING

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

AESTHETICALLY APPEALING

TECHNICALLY UNSKILFUL

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

TECHNICALLY SKILFUL

 

RESULTS

 

Verbal and musical interaction

Table 3 shows a significant relationship between task directed play and group score (r=.47, p<.05). No relationship was found between task directed talk, exploratory play, off task talk and interaction with the researcher and group score. A t-test revealed that there was significantly more play than talk (t=10.71, p<.001).

Pearson Correlations Between the Process Variables and the Group Score

Table 3

 

Group Score (N=18)

Process Variables

r

p

Task directed play

.47

.05

Task directed talk

.33

ns

Exploratory play

-.18

ns

Off task talk

-.17

ns

Interaction with researcher

-.05

ns

 

Gender

In the mixed gender groups, neither gender consistently took control of the task. Table 4 shows the mean marks awarded to the compositions. The all-girl groups were awarded the highest marks, followed by the all-boy groups and the mixed gender groups. These differences were not significant.

 

Score by Group Type

Table 4

 

Mean

(S.D.)

F

p

 

Boys

Girls

Mixed

df (2,15)

 

Group score

53

(20.89)

69

(6.37)

52

(14.97)

2.41

.12

DISCUSSION

Verbal and musical interaction

In this study, there was a significant relationship between group productivity and task directed play. This suggests that, in line with study 1, musical interaction was important for productivity. However, in contrast to study 1, no relationship was found between group productivity and task directed talk, and there was significantly more play than talk. It is suggested here that this was due to the nature of the task. The formal music composition task required the children to work directly with musical structure and form rather than with the direct representation of external events. The children's ideas were more efficiently expressed directly through the music and not through verbal discussion.

Gender

In this study, neither gender consistently took control of the task in the mixed gender groups. The boys and girls may have felt on a more equal footing in this study than in Study 1 in terms of their ability to tackle the task. Perhaps this type of task was one to which the boys were better able to relate and may be more akin to the sort of music they enjoy. Or perhaps it was a type of task to which the girls were less able to relate. This requires further investigation.

 

 

STUDY 3

COMPOSE A PIECE OF MUSIC THAT WILL MAKE ME HAPPY: AN EMOTION-BASED COMPOSITION TASK

Studies 1 and 2 have looked at children working on a representational and formal music composition task respectively. With the representational music composition task, where the stimulus was highly verbal, both verbal and musical interaction were related to productivity. With a formal music composition task, while musical interaction was related to productivity, verbal interaction was not. It was suggested that these differences were due to the nature of the task. It is therefore important to examine a further type of task in order to support these claims. On the basis of the above findings, it is suggested that with an emotion-based music composition task, musical interaction will have a significant relationship with group productivity and that verbal interaction will be both less prevalent and less important.

The two key gender issues are again examined here: whether one gender consistently takes control of the task in the mixed gender groups, and the relative productivity of single and mixed gender groups.

METHOD

Seventy two children aged 9-11 were taken from a third primary school. The same procedure as before was used in this study. The children were asked to work together to compose a piece of music 'that will make me happy'. The quality of the compositions was assessed by three raters using the Hargreaves et al (1996) scale discussed above.

RESULTS

Verbal and musical interaction

Table 5 shows that a significant relationship was found between group productivity and task directed play (r=.56, p<.05). No relationships were found between group productivity and task directed talk, exploratory play, off task talk or interaction with the researcher. A t-test revealed that there was significantly more play than talk (t=19.76, p<.001).

Pearson Correlations Between The Process Variables and the Group Score

Table 5

 

Group Score (N=18)

Process variables

r

p

Task directed play

.55

.02

Task directed talk

.14

ns

Exploratory play

-.40

ns

Off task talk

-.07

ns

Interaction with researcher

-.40

ns

Gender

Neither gender was found to consistently take control of the task in the mixed gender groups. Table 6 shows that the all-boy groups were awarded significantly higher marks for their compositions than the mixed gender groups (F=5.28, p<.05). The all-girl groups lay in the middle.

 

Score by Group Type

Table 6

 

Mean

(S.D.)

F

p

 

Boys

Girls

Mixed

df (2,15)

 

Group score

37

(5.85)

30

(12.39)

21

(4.40)

5.28

.02

 

DISCUSSION

The results support the hypothesis that musical interaction would be related to group productivity and that there would be no relationship between group productivity and verbal interaction. It is suggested that this is due to the nature of the task.

In this study, the all-boy groups were significantly more productive than the mixed gender groups, with the all-girl groups lying between the two. It was suggested in the discussion of study 1 that the status theories may explain female verbal domination in the mixed gender groups, and that music in schools may be perceived as being more 'for girls' than 'for boys'. It may not be quite so clear cut - rather than the subject being gender specific, it may be the task within that. There is some suggestion that girls prefer to work on tasks that are more structured and verbal in nature (Morgan, 1998). Boys tend to fare better on more open-ended, creative tasks. The task in study 3 is the most abstract of the three and may therefore appeal more to the boys than the girls.

 

GENERAL DISCUSSION

 

Verbal and Musical Interaction

The three studies of children's collaborative music composition presented in this chapter provide support for those who claim that communication among children in collaborating groups is crucial for group productivity (e.g. Rogoff, 1998, Wegerif, Mercer & Dawes, 1999). However, the present research suggests that this communication need not always be verbal, but can also be communication through music. These findings are important because they show that children communicated their ideas through music across a range of music composition tasks.

In study 1, the children were given a representational composition task and it was found to be important that they talked to each other during the collaborative working period in addition to playing the instruments. There were significantly higher levels of talk than play, but both were important for the productivity of the group. In study 2, the children were given a formal music composition task, where they were asked to produce a continuous piece of music as distinct from a series of sounds. The most important element of the task activity was found to be task directed play, that is the presentation of ideas through music rather than words. Verbal interaction did not have a significant relationship with group productivity and there was significantly more play than talk during the collaborative working period. To assess this further, study 3 was conducted with a third type of task, an emotion-based task. In this task, the children were asked to compose a piece of music that "will make me happy". Again, communication of ideas through the musical instruments was both apparent and important, and verbal interaction showed no clear relationship with group productivity. There were very low levels of verbal interaction and high levels of musical interaction.

In study 1, there was a positive relationship between talk and quality of composition. No such relationship was found in studies 2 and 3. One possible explanation for these different findings is the nature of the task. In studies 2 and 3 the children had to work directly with musical form and structure and thus communication through music was more important. This explanation is only tentative, because each of the studies was carried out in a different school with different approaches to music education. More research is needed to establish which of the findings are due to the nature of the task, and which are due to the differences among the schools.

All three studies showed there was a significant and positive relationship between musical interaction, as measured by task-directed play, and the quality of the music compositions.

No relationship was found between exploratory play and the quality of the music composition in any of the three studies. The exact nature and function of what was called exploratory play is still rather unclear. It was defined as an individualistic form of play, as opposed to play directed towards the group or towards completion of the task. It was essentially the exploration of the musical instruments. While this element of play is considered individualistic rather than co-operative, it did not have a negative relationship with group productivity as would be expected. Rather it showed no relationship with group productivity. It is therefore dangerous to assume that exploratory play is somehow detrimental, it may in fact be a vital part of task accomplishment, or have some other role that the present analysis has not tapped into. It may be an important precursor to task directed play, where the child may be trying out ideas for him/herself before feeling ready or able to share those ideas with the rest of the group. What begins its life as an exploration of ideas at the individual level may somehow make the transition to task directed play at the group level. 'Group score' may not be the most effective means of assessing its importance.

A fundamental difficulty with the definition of exploratory play was that it did not distinguish between individualistic playing involving trying out ideas, and simply 'messing around' with the instruments. On a behavioural level, this distinction is problematic to make as it involves inferences of intention on the part of the child. While exploratory play did not show a clear relationship with group productivity, high levels of this behaviour were observed in all four studies, and so it would seem feasible to suggest that it must have some function. Is it improvisation, exploration of ideas, exploration of the instruments or simply a time wasting activity to avoid working on the task? It is important to study the elements which make up the category of exploratory play as it may consist of all of these.

Although all three studies showed that children can make use of musical interaction for the effective communication of ideas, many questions remain unanswered. Does musical interaction act like verbal interaction. That is, if the purpose of verbal interaction in collaborating groups is to present ideas and discuss their alternatives, how is this happening in music? To what extent are ideas presented musically and subsequently modified musically? Verbal interaction essentially involves reciprocity; to what extent does this occur in musical interaction? Does one person in the group dominate in their instrumental playing as sometimes occurs in verbal interaction? These issues require further investigation.

Given Allison's (1986) argument that problem solving in the arts requires the use of thought patterns different from those in science, it may have been expected that the children would work in a way that was different from the way they might approach a science-based task. However, composition is a form of problem solving, where a problem is set up, decisions are taken to solve the problem which results in the satisfaction of having answered them (Salaman, 1988). While it is accepted that there may be infinite solutions to this problem, the results of the present research suggest that the work needed to complete the task may involve similar processes to those observed in science-based tasks. That is, behaviourally, the same factors found to be responsible for productivity in science-based tasks account for productivity in music composition tasks, namely the communication of ideas and the establishment of a shared social reality.

Gender Composition of the Collaborating Group

The studies concentrated on two main gender issues: firstly the findings of previous research which suggest that boys in mixed gender groups dominate verbally and non-verbally over girls; and secondly, the suggestion that mixed gender groups tend to be less productive than single gender groups.

 

Mixed Gender Groups

Study 1 showed the most surprising results in that it was the girls in the mixed gender groups who dominated verbally over the boys. This is in stark contrast with previous research, which suggests that in mixed gender groups, it is the boys who occupy the most 'verbal space' (Swann, 1992). This could be explained by the theory that if a subject is perceived as being within the domain of expertise of one gender, that gender will take control of the task (Lee, 1993). Music in school has been rated as being 'towards the feminine' (Archer, 1992), and so one would expect the females to dominate. However, studies 2 and 3 found the genders to be on an equal footing in that neither boys nor girls consistently took control of the task. Perhaps it is not the simple case of music being seen as 'feminine', rather the task within that. It is important also to determine whether it is the boys who felt more competent in the second two tasks than they did in the first one, or whether the girls felt less able to tackle the second two than the first one.

The Relative Productivity of Single and Mixed Gender Groups

Previous research suggests that mixed gender groups perform less effectively than single gender groups (e.g. Fitzpatrick & Hardman, 1994). Study 3 was the only one to show a significant difference in group productivity as measured by the rating scales, with the all-boy groups attaining significantly higher marks for their compositions than the mixed gender groups. Study 2 showed the mixed gender groups to be the least productive, but this difference was not significant. In Study 1, the all-girl groups achieved the highest marks, followed by the mixed gender groups then the all-boy groups, although this difference did not reach significance. The results of the studies point towards the suggestion that mixed gender groups are less effective than single gender groups, although as the differences in productivity only reached significance in one of the studies, any conclusions based on this should be made with caution. These findings are important as a study carried out by the authors revealed that teachers prefer children to work in mixed gender groups for music composition (Morgan, 1998), and this may in fact not be the most effective method in terms of group productivity.

Any conclusions about the gender issues raised here should be attempted with caution. The fact that there is not one consistent finding relating to gender throughout the three studies suggests that more research of this kind is needed to determine how much of the observed differences are due to the nature of the task. It could tentatively be concluded that the girls engaged in more task directed behaviours when working on the representational task (Study 1), whereas the boys seemed unable to engage themselves appropriately. This was apparent by female verbal domination in mixed gender groups and the all-girl groups' achievement of the highest marks. In the other two types of task (formal and emotion-based), the boys and girls seemed on a more equal footing in terms of task directed behaviours, although the all-boy groups in Study 3 obtained significantly higher evaluations for their compositions than the mixed gender groups.

 

 SUMMARY

In sum, the present research has been concerned with children's collaborative music composition, with the principal aim of establishing which factors within groups of children are important for group productivity. Previous peer collaboration research has suggested that the most important element of task activity within groups is the dialogue among group members. In the three studies reported here, the importance of verbal communication was found to be dependent on the composition task. The present research also showed that this 'dialogue' could occur musically, that is through the music itself rather than through words. Thus, talking about music composition is not always productive, and there is no substitute for the experience of the music itself.

  

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