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Rethinking Mendelssohn$
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Benedict Taylor

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780190611781

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2020

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190611781.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 29 November 2021

Reassessing Mendelssohn’s Song Aesthetic through the Lens of Religion

Reassessing Mendelssohn’s Song Aesthetic through the Lens of Religion

The Case of ‘Entsagung’

(p.379) 16 Reassessing Mendelssohn’s Song Aesthetic through the Lens of Religion
Rethinking Mendelssohn

Jennifer Ronyak

Oxford University Press

Felix Mendelssohn’s ‘Entsagung’, Op. 9 No. 11, sets a text by Johann Gustav Droysen that is influenced by Protestant practice, although the song is not sacred in the traditional sense and was published in the context of a secular song collection. Scholars have long been interested in the role of Protestantism in Mendelssohn’s music; however, they have seldom addressed the issue with respect to his solo lieder, having focused instead on his larger-scale sacred works. This chapter examines this unusual lied in order to explore how Protestant thought found its place in Mendelssohn’s lieder. In so doing, it also shows how aesthetic problems particular to religious lieder presented challenges to Mendelssohn’s philosophy of song composition.

Keywords:   Felix Mendelssohn, ‘Entsagung’, Op. 9 No. 11, Johann Gustav Droysen, Protestantism, sacred lied, song aesthetic

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