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Narrating Masculinity in the Dance Contest from Ravel's Daphnis et Chloé

Narrating Masculinity in the Dance Contest from Ravel's Daphnis et Chloé The scenario of the dance contest from Ravel's Daphnis et Chloé presents a narrative in which the hero, Daphnis – in typical patriarchal fashion – is rewarded with Chloé as a prize. The period of Daphnis’s creation saw widespread anxiety over the proper performance of masculinity. Given the ‘duel’ fought between Daphnis and Dorcon, I employ the gendered connotations of duelling narratives as an interpretative lens through which to view the ballet's scene. I propose a methodology developed from the conceptually similar praxes of A. J. Greimas and Heinrich Schenker for the analysis of narrative structures in different media from within the same theoretical framework. Central to my narrative analysis is the conceptualisation of a desiring musical subject who seeks to establish a state of conjunction with an object of value, in this case a specific tonal centre. I consider the inflection of underlying tonal processes by voice‐leading structures in relation to an examination of the expressive course of the narrative discourse, leading to an interpretation in which Daphnis's victory can be understood to express and emphasise the tensions at the heart of French masculinity at the fin de siècle. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Music Analysis Wiley

Narrating Masculinity in the Dance Contest from Ravel's Daphnis et Chloé

Music Analysis , Volume 40 (1) – Mar 1, 2021

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Publisher
Wiley
Copyright
Music Analysis © 2021 John Wiley & Sons Ltd
ISSN
0262-5245
eISSN
1468-2249
DOI
10.1111/musa.12163
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

The scenario of the dance contest from Ravel's Daphnis et Chloé presents a narrative in which the hero, Daphnis – in typical patriarchal fashion – is rewarded with Chloé as a prize. The period of Daphnis’s creation saw widespread anxiety over the proper performance of masculinity. Given the ‘duel’ fought between Daphnis and Dorcon, I employ the gendered connotations of duelling narratives as an interpretative lens through which to view the ballet's scene. I propose a methodology developed from the conceptually similar praxes of A. J. Greimas and Heinrich Schenker for the analysis of narrative structures in different media from within the same theoretical framework. Central to my narrative analysis is the conceptualisation of a desiring musical subject who seeks to establish a state of conjunction with an object of value, in this case a specific tonal centre. I consider the inflection of underlying tonal processes by voice‐leading structures in relation to an examination of the expressive course of the narrative discourse, leading to an interpretation in which Daphnis's victory can be understood to express and emphasise the tensions at the heart of French masculinity at the fin de siècle.

Journal

Music AnalysisWiley

Published: Mar 1, 2021

References