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Foundations of Musical Grammar$
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Lawrence M. Zbikowski

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780190653637

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2017

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190653637.001.0001

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Music and Words

Music and Words

(p.167) Chapter Six Music and Words
Foundations of Musical Grammar

Lawrence M. Zbikowski

Oxford University Press

This chapter focuses on the different ways language and music construct meaning as revealed through the medium of song. The chapter focuses on the German Lied of the early nineteenth century, and it offers analyses of three settings of Goethe’s lyric poem “Über allen Gipfeln ist Ruh.” The first is an 1814 setting by Carl Friedrich Zelter; the second was written around 1816 by Carl Loewe; the third was completed sometime before 1824 by Franz Schubert. These analyses show how each setting changes the interpretation of Goethe’s poem, demonstrating how the different grammatical resources offered by music and language shape the way meaning is constructed in these songs.

Keywords:   Goethe, language, Lieder, Loewe, musical grammar, Schubert, song, Zelter

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