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Look Inside Monteverdi's Unruly Women

Monteverdi's Unruly Women
The Power of Song in Early Modern Italy

$45.99 (C)

Part of New Perspectives in Music History and Criticism

  • Date Published: September 2009
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521120265

$ 45.99 (C)
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About the Authors
  • Monteverdi's Unruly Women examines the composer's madrigals and music dramas for what they can tell us about the musical and cultural world of singing and the voice in early modern Italy. Monteverdi's music demanded trained, female voices to make dramatic and expressive statements. At a time when singing was not entirely acceptable for respectable women his music allowed women to use their voices to gain power. Bonnie Gordon also explores the social and musical environment in which the singers lived and worked. Using key primary source material such as singing treatises and Renaissance writings on medicine and acoustics, Gordon contributes to two distinct disciplines: she brings an increased engagement with medical and literary representations of the female body to the growing field of scholarship treating gender and music, and adds to a well-established industry of scholarship devoted to the perception of gender and the body in early modern Europe.

    • Describes the ways that anatomical details of the human voice were understood in the Renaissance
    • Sheds light on famous pieces by Monteverdi
    • Very interdisciplinary and will be accessible to non-musicians
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    Reviews & endorsements

    "This learned, passionate, and provocative book opens new avenues of thought and perspective." Choice

    "Her study provides a context for future studies of women and the portrayal of women in music in the Renaissance and Baroque eras."
    --The Opera Journal

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    Product details

    • Date Published: September 2009
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521120265
    • length: 248 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 152 x 14 mm
    • weight: 0.37kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Introduction
    1. Vocal anatomies: mouths, breath and throats in early modern Italy
    2. Back talk: the power of female song on the stage
    3. Madrigalian desire: the convergence of love and sex in madrigals
    4. Emblazoning Angioletta: musical fantasies and dissection
    5. Angry ladies: changing experiences of sensations
    Coda.

  • Author

    Bonnie Gordon, State University of New York, Stony Brook

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