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Word and Music Studies

Essays on Music and the Spoken Word and on Surveying the Field


Edited by Suzanne M. Lodato and David Francis Urrows

The nine interdisciplinary essays in this volume were presented in 2003 in Berlin at the Fourth International Conference on Word and Music Studies, which was sponsored by The International Association for Word and Music Studies (WMA). The nine articles in this volume cover two areas: “Surveying the Field” and “Music and the Spoken Word”. Topics include postmodernism, philosophy, German literary modernism, opera, film, the Lied, radio plays, and “verbal counterpoint”. They cover the works of such philosophers, critics, literary figures, and composers as Argento, Beckett, Deleuze, Guattari, Feldman, Glenn Gould, Nietzsche, Schubert, Strauss, Wagner, and Wolfram. Three films are discussed: Casablanca, The Fisher King, and Thirty Two Short Films About Glenn Gould.


Joanna Woodall

'Painting contains a divine force which not only makes the absent present, as friendship is said to do, but moreover makes the dead seem almost alive.' Taking up Alberti's connection between divine power, mimesis and friendship, this study explores the artistry of the Utrecht portrait specialist Anthonis Mor. It considers Mor's work in relation to reformation debates, and to the challenges to dynastic authority that took place during his lifetime, tracing the breakdown and transformation of belief in 'friendship' or love as a means of binding abstract authority and the embodied world together. Although Mor succeeded Titian as principal portraitist to the Habsburgs, his ambition was not limited to portrayal in a narrow sense. His work enters into dialogue with the elevated conceptions of the artist being enunciated by his humanist friends, and with devotional and allegorical imagery. The book brings Mor's arresting vision to a wider public and reveals its centrality to a broader understanding of how authority was conceived and reshaped in the sixteenth-century. previously published as hardback with isbn 9789040084218.


Edited by Walter Bernhart

Ulrich Weisstein, an international authority in the fields of comparative literature and comparative arts, has been a pioneer paving the way for present-day intermedia studies. Among his broad intermedial interests opera has always held a central place. For the first time this volume makes available his major contributions to opera criticism in compact form, thus meeting a serious scholarly demand.
The necessarily stringent selection of essays from Professor Weisstein’s large output on opera, reflecting fifty years of involvement with the genre, is primarily governed by the wish to present texts that are representative of their author’s work and, at the same time, are unlikely to be readily available through other channels. The fourteen essays collected are arranged in chronological order, some of them showing Ulrich Weisstein as an initiator of librettology, others tracing adaptive processes extending from textual sources to final operas, or investigating writer/composer collaborations. Further topics are satirical reflections on operatic activities in early-eighteenth-century Italy and practices of opera censorship, artist operas or definitions of romantic and epic opera. The essays are written in an accessible, essentially non-technical language and are expected to make both a profitable and a pleasurable reading for literary scholars as well as musicologists and general art lovers.

Pushkin's Mozart and Salieri

Themes, Character, Sociology


Robert Reid

Mozart and Salieri, probably the best known of Pushkin's `Little Tragedies', was written in 1830 during the peak of the poet's creative powers. Like the other Little Tragedies it is a `closet drama' which concentrates on the devastating effects of an all-consuming human passion, in this case envy. Mozart and Salieri typifies Pushkin's implicational technique of character construction: the salient points of a fictional psyche are highlighted sufficiently to suggest inner depth while stopping short of precise concretication; this allows full play to lectorial inference on a plurality of connotational levels - thematic, psychological and sociological. The present work, the first of its kind in English, isolates two major thematic dominants in the play - envy and music - and these form the focus for its aesthetic and psychological preoccupations respectively. A variety of psychological approaches are brought to bear on the play's protagonists including adaptations of the theories of Freud, Adler, Jung and Klages. The readiness with which these contrastive but complementary approaches yield new insights into the nature and motivations of the protagonists of Mozart and Salieri points to a work of profound cultural significance, something all the more remarkable given its modest compass. The sociological and anthropological approaches applied to the drama in this study dwell particularly on theories of social interaction and theories of alienation, anomie and suicide. Pushkin has often been regarded as an enigmatic phenomenon in the west, the compactness and economy of his works often seeming at odds with the degree of impact which they have made on subsequent generations of Russian writers. The present work seeks to lay bare what is typical for Pushkin: the intimation of great psychological and philosophical truths via a superficially unassuming medium. It is not surprising, therefore, that the influence of Pushkin's Mozart and Salieri, and of the aesthetic and ideological positions they represent, can be felt in the works of later Russian writers, notably Dostoyevsky.

Chris Uhlenbeck and Marije Jansen

Hiroshige Shaping the Image of Japan
is a comprehensive overview of Hiroshige's work as a woodblock print artist. Utagawa Hiroshige (1797-1858) is one of the great masters in the history of Japanese printmaking and this publication coincides with the 150th anniversary of his death. Hiroshige has worked in virtually every genre of ukiyo-e or 'images of the floating world'. He designed prints of beautiful women and brave heroes, but achieved his greatest fame through his depictions of the Japanese landscape, showing famous places in different seasons and at various times of day. These landscape prints, with their bright colors and strong compositions, were not only popular in Japan, but also found favor with European artists at the turn of the 19th century.

The main body of this publication includes a general introduction, sketching the cultural and economic environment of the artist Hiroshige, the development of his oeuvre, and the rise of his his artistic reputation in Japan and the West. This is followed by a chronological presentation of 140 full-color prints, selected from public and private collections.

Biographical data are sparse and only very few details of his life help explain the nature of his output. However, by carefully piecing together the information which can be gleaned from the works themselves, and combining it with the current knowledge on print production methods, the authors present a picture of Hiroshige as an artist-cum-craftsman who efficiently produced for his publishers, creating in the process an image of Japan which endures until this day.

Uncertain Territories

Boundaries in Cultural Analysis


Inge E. Boer

Tracing and theorizing the concept of the boundaries through literary works, visual objects and cultural phenomena, this book argues against the reification of boundaries as fixed and empty non-spaces that simply divide the world. Expanding on her previous work on gender and Orientalism, Inge Boer takes us into uncertain territories of fashion and art, tourism and travel, skilfully engaging the ambivalence of boundaries, as both protecting and confining, as bringing distinction while existing by virtue of their ability to be transgressed. In her close readings of that boundaries as desert, as frame, as home (or lack of it), Boer shows that boundaries are spaces within, through, and in the name of which negotiations take place. They are not lines but spaces ; neither fixed nor empty but flexible and inhabited.
With the publication of this book, Boer’s intellectual legacy stretches beyond her untimely passing. The writings that she left behind can be said to have inaugurated the future of her work, presented in the latter part by several of Boer’s intellectual companions. In their original essays, the contributors elaborate on Boer’s theme of boundaries as spaces where opposition yields to negotiation. Committed to the artefact as cultural stimulant, as the embodiment of thought, their analyses span a multitude of artefacts and media, ranging from literature to photography, to art installation and presentation, to film and song. Fanning out from Boer ‘s central focus – Orientalism – to other places of contestation, boundaries are shown to mediate the relationship between self and other ; they are, ultimately, spaces of encounter.

Sytze van der Veen

In 2008 Royal Brill commemorates its 325th anniversary as a publisher for the world of learning. Such a time-honored pedigree makes Brill the oldest publishing house in the Netherlands, and one of the oldest in the world. Its history goes back to 1683, when Jordaan Luchtmans established himself as a bookseller in Leiden. Five generations of his family ran the bookshop and publishing house on the Rapenburg Canal, near the Main Hall of Leiden University. The Luchtmanses produced a steady stream of scholarly books and served as “Printers to the University.” In the beginning of the nineteenth century, the Leiden printer Johannes Brill and his son Evert Jan became involved with the firm. The latter took over the business in 1848, combining it with his father’s printing works and continuing it under his own name. Since then the company has been known as “E. J. Brill,” which in recent years was shortened to “Brill.” Especially in the period between 1850 and 1900 the foundations were laid for a publishing program that still characterizes present-day Brill: Arabic and Oriental studies, languages and linguistics, classical studies and history.

In his day Jordaan Luchtmans published six books per year, while Brill’s assorted catalogs now offer some six hundred new titles every year. In an ever-changing world the publishing house has managed to persist well over three centuries, adapting itself to circumstances and using the opportunities that came its way. Still, in all its metamorphoses the firm steadfastly clung to its historically grown identity. Brill’s longevity is a remarkable story of continuity and change. The research for this book is based on the company archives, which are now housed in the Special Collections of the University of Amsterdam Library. With a span of more than three hundred years they offer a fascinating view on the development of Brill, and of the publishing business in general.

N.B.: Dit boek is ook beschikbaar in het Nederlands. Voor meer informatie klik hier.

Neue Sachlichkeit 1918-33

Unity and Diversity of an Art Movement


Steve Plumb

Neue Sachlichkeit is thought by many to have too many diverse elements to be a unified movement. Originally divided by G.F. Hartlaub into two ‘wings’, Neue Sachlichkeit has since been broken down by critics into more groups, sometimes with opposing styles or regional influences. However, the importance of these divisions has rarely been explored in depth. Unlike previous surveys, which accept Neue Sachlichkeit as a divided entity, this book shows for the first time that in spite of its divisions, it may still be regarded as a unified, coherent movement.
While different artists may have sought to express different specific concerns, what they all had in common was that they were uncomfortable with the world as it stood, and it is the way that this was expressed, making use of the object, that gave Neue Sachlichkeit its unity. This was just as true of the literature and photography of Neue Sachlichkeit, where the same themes as those found in the painting were frequently used. The fact that these are shared themes across different cultural media demonstrates that Neue Sachlichkeit reflected a mood of its time, and this book explores the ways in which this mood was expressed.

Architecture Language Critique

Around Paul Engelmann


Edited by J. Bakacsy, A.V. Munch and A.-L. Sommer

Paul Engelmann was Adolf Loos’s favorite pupil, private secretary to Karl Kraus and Ludwig Wittgenstein’s most important interlocutor in the years between 1916 and 1928 as well as his partner in building the Stonborough House. Thus it was that the trenchant critique of modernity associated with Wittgenstein’s Vienna originated around Paul Engelmann. The present volume of essays from an international symposium in Aarhus, Denmark in 1999 offers an interdisciplinary perspective on issues bearing upon architecture, language and cultural criticism as they relate to the life’s work of Paul Engelmann.