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Ruth Tatlow, Bach's Numbers: Compositional Proportion and Significance (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2015). xvii + 411 pp. £84.99 (hb), £22.99 (pb). ISBN 978‐1‐107‐08860‐3 (hb), 978‐1‐107‐45969‐4 (pb).

Ruth Tatlow, Bach's Numbers: Compositional Proportion and Significance (Cambridge: Cambridge... The recent music‐theoretical landscape has been marked by increasingly diverse approaches to analysis, ranging from ‘orthodox’ Schenkerian studies to geometrical and topological investigations inspired by pure mathematics (see, for instance, Tymoczko and Bigo, Giavitto and Spicher ). Amidst this variety of analytical techniques, however, lies a set of widely accepted assumptions that include a central precept involving composer intention: namely, the analyst should view music as a freely interpretable object, regardless of what a composer may have actually been thinking. Indeed, knowing the composer's intentions could even be limiting or lead us astray, as Jonathan Bernard (, pp. 215–16), Edward Latham (, para. [6]), and others have attested. The notion of the ‘intentional fallacy’ originated in literary criticism (see Wimsatt and Beardsley ) and entered scholarly musical discourse in the 1980s, when Richard Taruskin ( and ) put forth a famous series of responses to the ‘authenticity movement’ that questioned the validity of seeking ‘authentic’ recreations of early composers’ compositional or performative intentions. Discussions of the intentional fallacy have since been applied well beyond early music and historically informed performance; in particular, Ethan Haimo has considered the role of composer intention in twentieth‐century musical analysis, indicating that while documentary http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Music Analysis Wiley

Ruth Tatlow, Bach's Numbers: Compositional Proportion and Significance (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2015). xvii + 411 pp. £84.99 (hb), £22.99 (pb). ISBN 978‐1‐107‐08860‐3 (hb), 978‐1‐107‐45969‐4 (pb).

Music Analysis , Volume 36 (2) – Jul 1, 2017

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Publisher
Wiley
Copyright
Music Analysis © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd
ISSN
0262-5245
eISSN
1468-2249
DOI
10.1111/musa.12092
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

The recent music‐theoretical landscape has been marked by increasingly diverse approaches to analysis, ranging from ‘orthodox’ Schenkerian studies to geometrical and topological investigations inspired by pure mathematics (see, for instance, Tymoczko and Bigo, Giavitto and Spicher ). Amidst this variety of analytical techniques, however, lies a set of widely accepted assumptions that include a central precept involving composer intention: namely, the analyst should view music as a freely interpretable object, regardless of what a composer may have actually been thinking. Indeed, knowing the composer's intentions could even be limiting or lead us astray, as Jonathan Bernard (, pp. 215–16), Edward Latham (, para. [6]), and others have attested. The notion of the ‘intentional fallacy’ originated in literary criticism (see Wimsatt and Beardsley ) and entered scholarly musical discourse in the 1980s, when Richard Taruskin ( and ) put forth a famous series of responses to the ‘authenticity movement’ that questioned the validity of seeking ‘authentic’ recreations of early composers’ compositional or performative intentions. Discussions of the intentional fallacy have since been applied well beyond early music and historically informed performance; in particular, Ethan Haimo has considered the role of composer intention in twentieth‐century musical analysis, indicating that while documentary

Journal

Music AnalysisWiley

Published: Jul 1, 2017

References