Mahler's Sixth Symphony: A Study in Musical Semiotics

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Ian Bent
Cambridge University Press, Mar 11, 2004 - Music - 192 pages
1 Review
The terms of structuralist and post-structuralist theory have been widely debated within the field of music analysis in recent years. However, very few analyses have attempted to address the repertoire of large orchestral works of the turn of the century - works which seem most obviously to escape the categories of conventional analysis. This study uses a semiotic theory of signification in order to investigate different types of musical communication. Musical meaning is defined on several levels from structures immanent to the work, through questions of tradition and genre, to consideration of the symphony as a narrative alongside other contemporary non-musical texts. Ideas from Eco, Barthes, and Derrida are deployed within the context of close analysis of the score in order to unite specifically analytical insights with cultural hermeneutics.
  

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Contents

Music theory and signification
1
Motive as sign an analysis of the Andante
18
Coding of musical form the Finale
64
Genre and presupposition in the Mahlerian scherzo
91
Musical narrative and the suicide of the symphony
133

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About the author (2004)

Robert Samuels is Lecturer in Music at the Open University.

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