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Antithetical Arts – On the Ancient Quarrel Between Literature and Music - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Antithetical Arts: On the Ancient Quarrel Between Literature and Music

Peter Kivy


This book constitutes a defence of musical formalism against those who would put literary interpretations on the absolute music canon. In Part I, the historical origins of both the literary interpretation of absolute music and musical formalism are laid out. In Part II, specific attempts to put literary interpretations on various works of the absolute music canon are examined and criticized. Finally, in Part III, the question is raised as to what the human significance of absolute music is, if it does not lie in its representational or narrative content. The answer is that, as yet, philosophy ... More

Keywords: musical formalism, literary interpretations, absolute music canon, representational content, narrative content

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2009 Print ISBN-13: 9780199562800
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2009 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199562800.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Peter Kivy, author
Rutgers University
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