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When Schubert's contemporary reviewers first heard his modulations, they famously claimed that they were excessive, odd and unplanned. This book argues that these claims have haunted the analysis of Schubert's harmony ever since, outlining why Schubert's music occupies a curiously marginal position in the history of music theory. Analyzing Schubert traces how critics, analysts and historians from the early nineteenth century to the present day have preserved cherished narratives of wandering, alienation, memory and trance by emphasizing the mystical rather than the logical quality of the composer's harmony. This study proposes a new method for analyzing the harmony of Schubert's works. Rather than pursuing an approach that casts Schubert's famous harmonic moves as digressions from the norms of canonical theoretical paradigms, Suzannah Clark explores how the harmonic fingerprints in Schubert's songs and instrumental sonata forms challenge pedigreed habits of thought about what constitutes a theory of tonal and formal order.Read more
- Proposes a new method for analyzing the harmony of Schubert's songs and sonata forms, therefore it will appeal to those who are interested in listener-oriented methods of analysis
- Explains the role of music theory in accepted methods of musical hermeneutics, placing music theory in broader historical and social contexts
- Complex and influential concepts of Schenkerian and neo-Riemannian theory are explained in clear and simple terms
Reviews & endorsements
"The result is a book that not only offers new ways of understanding Schubert's music but critiques music theory itself, inviting further questioning of long-accepted assumptions. This work is a fascinating challenge..."
--ChoiceSee more reviews
"Recommended for all lovers of Schubert for sure; but also to anyone with more than a passing interest in the development of harmony in particular in the nineteenth century, and indeed musical history more generally."
"Analyzing Schubert certainly is controversial, particularly in Clark's critiques of well established theories, but it is sure to provoke further discussion on music theory's role in understanding music." --Music Research Forum (Volume 27,2012)
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- Date Published: September 2016
- format: Paperback
- isbn: 9781316620755
- length: 302 pages
- dimensions: 246 x 172 x 15 mm
- weight: 0.53kg
- contains: 1 b/w illus. 1 table 87 music examples
- availability: Available
Table of Contents
1. Singing Schubert's praises: the voice of Vogl in Schubert's early history
2. 'A word will often do it': harmonic adventure in Schubert's songs
3. Music theory and the musicological imagination: perceptions of Schubert's sonata form
4. Analyzing music theory: a Schubertian critique
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