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Rethinking Schumann$
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Roe-Min Kok and Laura Tunbridge

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780195393859

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195393859.001.0001

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Deserted Chambers of the Mind (Schumann Memories )

Deserted Chambers of the Mind (Schumann Memories )

(p.395) 17 Deserted Chambers of the Mind (Schumann Memories)
Rethinking Schumann

Laura Tunbridge (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This chapter discusses the significance of two persistent themes in late twentieth‐century musical, filmic, and visual representations of Schumann's life and legacy: childhood and mental illness. Responses to Schumann can be framed within the terms of renegotiating relationships with the German Romantic canon after World War II. But rather than evoking grand historical narratives, Schumann's music is more consistently connected with personal memories of childhood experiences and explorations of mental illness, as is demonstrated through examples from a range of decades, media, and continents, from film (Ingmar Bergman) and the visual arts (Anselm Kiefer and Neo Rauch) to music (from R. Murray Schafer and Francis Dhomont to Wolfgang Rihm and Heinz Holliger). Composers' use of musical quotations and commentaries on their works suggest that Schumann is considered to have been detached from the world, either physically (through his incarceration at Endenich) or mentally (through fantasies and hallucinations).

Keywords:   Quotation, Wolfgang Rihm, Francis Dhomont, Heinz Holliger, childhood, memory, mental illness, Ingmar Bergman

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