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  • Print publication year: 2002
  • Online publication date: March 2008

22 - Rhythm in twentieth-century theory

from C - Time
Summary
This chapter focuses on musical and intellectual developments which shaped twentieth-century rhythmic theory. In the twentieth century a number of theorists have regarded motion and movement as the essential substrate of musical rhythm and form. Kurth accounts for rhythmic gestures from small to large in terms of a nested set of waves or wave-like motions. The theorist who most directly engaged Kurth's ideas of motion and the wave-metaphor to describe such motion, however, was Viktor Zuckerkandl. For Wallace Berry, musical structure involves 'the punctuated shaping of time and 'space' into lines of growth, decline, and stasis hierarchically ordered'. Schenker's comments on rhythm and motion at the most abstract levels of structure are somewhat contradictory. Cooper and Meyer examine rhythms on lower architectonic levels, that is, the ways in which each of the five basic groups can fit into various meters.
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The Cambridge History of Western Music Theory
  • Online ISBN: 9781139053471
  • Book DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CHOL9780521623711
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