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The Quilting Points of Musical Modernism: Revolution, Reaction, and William Walton
     

The Quilting Points of Musical Modernism: Revolution, Reaction, and William Walton

by J. P. E. Harper-Scott
 

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Modernism is both a contested aesthetic category and a powerful political statement. Modernist music was condemned as degenerate by the Nazis and forcibly replaced by socialist realism under the Soviets. Sympathetic philosophers and critics have interpreted it as a vital intellectual defence against totalitarianism, yet some American critics consider it elitist,

Overview

Modernism is both a contested aesthetic category and a powerful political statement. Modernist music was condemned as degenerate by the Nazis and forcibly replaced by socialist realism under the Soviets. Sympathetic philosophers and critics have interpreted it as a vital intellectual defence against totalitarianism, yet some American critics consider it elitist, undemocratic and even unnatural. Drawing extensively on the philosophy of Heidegger and Badiou, Quilting Points proposes a new dialectical theory of faithful, reactive and obscure subjective responses to musical modernism, which embraces all the music of Western modernity. This systematic definition of musical modernism introduces readers to theory by Badiou, Žižek and Agamben. Basing his analyses on the music of William Walton, Harper-Scott explores connections between the revolutionary politics of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries and responses to the event of modernism in order to challenge accepted narratives of music history in the twentieth century.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780521765213
Publisher:
Cambridge University Press
Publication date:
08/16/2012
Series:
Music in Context Series
Pages:
304
Product dimensions:
7.10(w) x 9.80(h) x 2.80(d)

Meet the Author

J. P. E. Harper-Scott is Reader in Musicology and Theory at Royal Holloway, University of London. He has published widely on Elgar, Wagner, Britten and symphonic music and opera of the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries and his books include Elgar Studies (edited with Julian Rushton), An Introduction to Music Studies (edited with Jim Samson) and Edward Elgar, Modernist. His work has strong intersections with continental philosophy and psychoanalysis (Heidegger, Badiou, Žižek and Lacan) and has increasingly come to espouse an explicitly Leftist perspective.

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