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Becoming Heinrich Schenker: Music Theory and Ideology

Becoming Heinrich Schenker: Music Theory and Ideology Matthew Arndt Robert P. Morgan's Becoming Heinrich Schenker: Music Theory and Ideology "offers a conceptual overview of Schenker's theoretical development and ideological position, and it attempts to tell how his work aimed" "to explain the pitch structure of a limited portion of [tonal] music . . . totally and with complete rationality" or "to explain what tonal music is and how it works" (xv, xiii, 15). The book adheres to two premises. First, Morgan assumes that "Schenker's evolution can be understood as basically consistent and unidirectional, and that it moves toward the final theory," a "highly systematic and self-contained" theory whose "absolute completion" is represented by The Masterwork in Music, volume 3, and whose "complete presentation" is represented by Free Composition (xviii, xvi). Second, he assumes that Schenker's theory "contains an ideological paradox consisting of two apparently independent and opposed philosophical strains: a nineteenth-century Idealist one and a twentieth-century Modernist one" (xiii). As for previous studies, "their tendency has been to emphasize one side of his philosophical position at the expense of the other. . . . I prefer, on the other hand, to see both idealism and empiricism as consistently present throughout Schenker's entire theoretical career" (xivn1; http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Music Theory Duke University Press

Becoming Heinrich Schenker: Music Theory and Ideology

Journal of Music Theory , Volume 60 (1) – Apr 1, 2016

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Publisher
Duke University Press
Copyright
Copyright © Duke Univ Press
ISSN
0022-2909
eISSN
1941-7497
DOI
10.1215/00222909-3448764
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Matthew Arndt Robert P. Morgan's Becoming Heinrich Schenker: Music Theory and Ideology "offers a conceptual overview of Schenker's theoretical development and ideological position, and it attempts to tell how his work aimed" "to explain the pitch structure of a limited portion of [tonal] music . . . totally and with complete rationality" or "to explain what tonal music is and how it works" (xv, xiii, 15). The book adheres to two premises. First, Morgan assumes that "Schenker's evolution can be understood as basically consistent and unidirectional, and that it moves toward the final theory," a "highly systematic and self-contained" theory whose "absolute completion" is represented by The Masterwork in Music, volume 3, and whose "complete presentation" is represented by Free Composition (xviii, xvi). Second, he assumes that Schenker's theory "contains an ideological paradox consisting of two apparently independent and opposed philosophical strains: a nineteenth-century Idealist one and a twentieth-century Modernist one" (xiii). As for previous studies, "their tendency has been to emphasize one side of his philosophical position at the expense of the other. . . . I prefer, on the other hand, to see both idealism and empiricism as consistently present throughout Schenker's entire theoretical career" (xivn1;

Journal

Journal of Music TheoryDuke University Press

Published: Apr 1, 2016

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