Absolute Music: The History of an Idea by Mark Evan Bonds

By Mark Evan Bonds

what's tune, and why does it circulate us? From Pythagoras to the current, writers have struggled to isolate the essence of "pure" or "absolute" track in ways in which additionally account for its profound impact. In Absolute song: The historical past of an idea, Mark Evan Bonds lines the heritage of those efforts throughout greater than millennia, paying unique realization to the connection among music's essence and its characteristics of shape, expression, attractiveness, autonomy, in addition to its perceived capability to reveal philosophical truths.

The center of this booklet makes a speciality of the interval among 1850 and 1945. even if the belief of natural tune is as outdated as antiquity, the time period "absolute song" is itself particularly contemporary. It used to be Richard Wagner who coined the time period, in 1846, and he used it as a pejorative in his efforts to reveal the constraints of only instrumental tune. For Wagner, song that was once "absolute" was once remoted, indifferent from the area, sterile. His modern, the Viennese critic Eduard Hanslick, embraced this caliber of isolation as a guarantor of purity. in simple terms natural, absolute track, he argued, might become aware of the top capability of the art.

Bonds unearths how and why perceptions of absolute song replaced so considerably among the 1850s and Nineteen Twenties. while it first seemed, "absolute tune" was once a brand new time period utilized to previous track, yet through the early a long time of the 20th century, it had become-paradoxically--an outdated time period linked to the hot tune of modernists like Schoenberg and Stravinsky. Bonds argues that the main advancements during this shift lay now not in discourse approximately track yet relatively the visible arts. The starting to be status of abstraction and shape in portray on the flip of the 20 th century-line and colour, rather than object-helped movement the belief of in simple terms summary, absolute track to the leading edge of musical modernism.

By conscientiously tracing the evolution of absolute track from historic Greece throughout the heart a long time to the twentieth-century, Bonds not just presents the 1st entire heritage of this pivotal idea but in addition provokes new strategies at the essence of track and the way essence has been used to give an explanation for music's impression. a protracted awaited e-book from the most revered senior students within the box, Absolute track might be crucial interpreting for an individual attracted to the background, idea, and aesthetics of music.

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