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Contemplating ArtEssays in Aesthetics$
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Jerrold Levinson

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780199206179

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2007

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199206179.001.0001

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Musical Thinking

Musical Thinking

(p.209) 11 Musical Thinking
Contemplating Art

Jerrold Levinson (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This essay, which begins with a commentary on Wittgenstein's scattered remarks on musical understanding, poses the question of whether there is a distinctive, non-verbal form of thinking that music, or alternatively, the composing or performing of music, might be said to exemplify. A positive answer is returned, and three candidates for such distinctively ‘musical’ thinking are sketched. These are illustrated with a number of musical examples, most notably, Beethoven's ‘Tempest’ Sonata and Stan Getz's rendition of ‘The Girl from Ipanema’.

Keywords:   Wittgenstein, musical understanding, Beethoven, Stan Getz, composing, performance

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