This study includes selected songs for voice and piano composed by Schubert between 1822 and his death on November 19, 1828. Schubert was diagnosed with syphilis circa late 1822, and many of the songs discussed were written with his knowledge of impending death. It is possible to discover within them a late song style, full of elegiac references to Schubert's other death-haunted works and marked by distinctive variation techniques. Youens also introduces six of the poets whose texts were set to music by Schubert.
"Youens provides a good companion to her volume...She considers outstanding masterpieces that seldom have received appropriate treatment from lied commentators, always examining them with the meticulous detail her readers have come to expect. This specialists volume will be highly regarded by all Schubertians and lovers of the 19t-century lied. It should find a place in every academic collection." Choice
List of illustrations; Preface and acknowledgments; 1. Of dwarfs, perversion, and patriotism: Schubert and Matthäus von Collin; 2. Ego, Ehrgeiz, and the lied: Schubert and 'the Homer of the Habsburgs,' Johann Ladislaus Pyrker; 3. Of song, sorrow, and censorship: Schubert and Carl Gottfried Ritter von Leitner; 4. Songs of life, death, and departure: Schubert's Viennese contemporaries; Select bibliography; Index.