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By Daniel Chua

This ebook examines the highbrow background of instrumental track, specifically the assumption of absolute tune. It attempts to teach how definite principles in philosophy, theology and the sciences impact the which means and, certainly, the life of instrumental track, and the way, in flip, instrumental song is used to unravel or exemplify convinced difficulties in sleek tradition. rather than latest in a natural and self reliant shape, song is woven again into the epistemological textile and entangled with a variety of discourses, hence demonstrating the centrality of song within the building of which means.

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Additional resources for Absolute Music and the Construction of Meaning (New Perspectives in Music History and Criticism)

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Thomas, Music and the Origins of Language (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1995), and JeanJacques Rousseau, Essai sur l’origine des langues (1764) in The First and Second Discourses together with the replies to Critics and Essay on the Origin of Languages, ed. and trans. V. Gourevitch (New York: Harper & Row, 1986). 28 In the trivium, music becomes human and can be made infinitely malleable by the power of rhetorical persuasion. This shift allows man to bend music according to his linguistic will, twisting and distorting its intervals to vocalise his passional self.

38 Having dismantled the coherence of a harmonic cosmos, modernity’s desire to construct a new unity out of itself merely produces a divided totality. ’41 But this reharmonisation of the cosmos was merely a speculative abstraction in a world without the monochord; stars no longer sang, and scales no longer laddered the sky. To reenchant a rationalised world, the Romantics could not reconstruct a system of resemblances that would validate celestial truths that are eternal and external to their subjectivity; they only had an aesthetic system which searches for truths from the particularity of their own ego, 36 37 38 40 41 Friedrich von Schiller, On the Aesthetic Education of Man: In a Series of Letters, trans.

Romain Rolland, Musicien d’autrefois (Paris: Librairie Hachette, 1908), 19. See Nino Pirrotta and Elena Povoledo, Music and Theatre from Poliziano to Monteverdi, trans. K. Eales (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1982), 3–36, Tim Carter, Music in Late Renaissance and Early Baroque Italy (London: B. T. Batsford, 1992), 152, and Roy Strong, Art and Power: Renaissance Festivals 1450–1650 (Woodbridge: Boydell Press, 8 1973), 37. See Pirrotta, Music and Theatre, 120. 30 On opera separate Poliziano’s Orfeo from Monteverdi’s.

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