Word and Music Studies: Essays on Performativity and on Surveying the Field


Volume Editor:
The main section of this volume of essays addresses the topic of ‘Performativity in Literature and Music’, a subject of high contemporary relevance since a substantial part of recent reflections in the humanities are concerned with the performance aspect of cultural activities, particularly in the arts. This decisive reorientation of scholarly interests in the arts, trendily called the ‘performative turn’, has yielded significant contributions to an increasingly refined understanding of artistic processes from an up-to-date perspective, and specifically what has been called the ‘crisis of the work concept’ has sharpened our awareness of the need of finding the ‘proper’ object of such scholarly investigations, which, as in most traditional studies, cannot be exclusively the written documents of our cultural heritage, but additionally, and essentially so, their actualizations in performance situations.
This volume for the first time offers a set of careful case studies from a wide range of artistic genres (narrative fiction, poetry, opera, instrumental music, songs, jazz) and historical phases (from Elizabethan verse to 21st-century HD opera performances) which give detailed insight into consequences of addressing issues of performativity in the field of word and music studies. Closely examined examples range, in music, from the romantic reception of Bach and the opera singer Maria Malibran through Mahler and Schoenberg to Brigitte Fassbaender, Philip Glass and Charles Mingus, and, in literature, from Sidney through Yeats and Celan to Katherine Mansfield, Alejo Carpentier and Toni Morrison.
In addition, the volume contains a smaller section on ‘Surveying the Field’ of word and music studies which includes an essay of general reflection on interart relationships and an attempt at identifying new features of the ‘musicalization of fiction’.
This collection of essays will be relevant to students and scholars from a wide variety of fields: performance studies, intermediality studies, art theory, musicology, voice studies, literary criticism, and philosophy.

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Preliminary Material
Editor(s): Walter Bernhart
Pages: a–x
Notes on Contributors
Editor(s): Walter Bernhart
Pages: 291–296
Performativity in Literature and Music
Tobias Janz: Performativity and the Musical Work of Art
David Francis Urrows: Text vs. Act: The Bearbeitungsfrage and the ‘Romantic Baroque’
Robert Samuels: The Act of Performance as Mahlerian Topic
Katia Chornik: Politics, Music and Irony in Alejo Carpentier’s Novel La consagración de la primavera (The Rite of Spring)
Delia da Sousa Correa: Musical Performativity in the Fiction of Katherine Mansfield
Walter Bernhart: Rhythmical Ambivalence of Poetry Performance: The Case of Elizabethan Verse
Adrian Paterson: “Music will keep out temporary ideas”: W. B. Yeats’s Radio Performances
Axel Englund: ‘The Invisible’ / ‘The Inaudible’: Aspects of Performativity in Celan and Leibowitz
Simon Williams: Romantic Opera and the Virtuoso
Lawrence Kramer: Sexing Song: Brigitte Fassbaender’s Winterreise
Michael Halliwell: Vocal Embodiment and Performing Language in Waiting for the Barbarians: Philip Glass’s Adaptation of J. M. Coetzee’s Novel
Bernhard Kuhn: Operatic Hyperreality in the Twenty-First Century: Performance Documentation in High-Definition Quality
Emily Petermann: Jazz Novels and the Textualization of Musical Performance
Mario Dunkel: Charles Mingus and Performative Composing
Katrin Eggers: Wittgenstein and Schoenberg on Performativity of Music as Method for Philosophy
Surveying the Field
Peter Dayan: Seeing Words and Music as a Painter Might: The Interart Aesthetic
David Mosley: Milan Kundera’s Polyphonic Novels and the Poetics of Divestment
Notes on Contributors
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