A History of Western Musical Aesthetics

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U of Nebraska Press, 1992 - Music - 551 pages
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Among the fine arts music has always held a paramount position. "Musical training is a more potent instrument than any other, because rhythm and harmony find their way into the inward places of the soul, " wrote Plato. From the "music of the spheres" of Pythagoras to the "Future Music" of Wagner, from churches, courts, cathedrals, and concert halls to amateur recitals, military marches, and electronic records, music has commanded the perpetual attention of every civilization in history. This book follows through the centuries the debates about the place and function of music, the perceived role of music as a good or bad influence on the development of character, as a magical art or a domestic entertainment, and as a gateway to transcendental truths. Edward Lippman describes the beginnings of musical tradition in the myths and philosophies of antiquity. He shows how music theory began to take on new dimensions and intensity in the seventeenth century, how musical aesthetics was specifically defined and elaborated in the eighteenth century, and how, by the nineteenth century, music became the standard by which other arts were judged. The twentieth century added problems, pressure, and theories as music continued to diversify and as cultures viewed each other with more respect.
 

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Contents

THE EMERGENCE OF AESTHETIC ISSUES
17
THE EIGHTEENTH CENTURY
57
Imitation and Expression
83
Operatic Aesthetics
137
THE NINETEENTH CENTURY
201
Emotional Realism 139
239
Formalism and Autonomy 191
291
The Idealist Tradition
320
THE TWENTIETH CENTURY
349
Conceptions of Objectivity
393
The Phenomenology of Music
437
The Sociology of Music
470
NOTES
511
BIBLIOGRAPHY
519
INDEX
531
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About the author (1992)

Edward Lippman, professor emeritus of music at Columbia University, is the author of A Humanistic Philosophy of Music and many other works.

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