Freedom and the Arts

Freedom and the Arts

Essays on Music and Literature

eBook - 2012
Average Rating:
Rate this:
Harvard University Press

Is there a moment in history when a work receives its ideal interpretation? Or is negotiation always required to preserve the past and accommodate the present? The freedom of interpretation, Charles Rosen suggests in these sparkling explorations of music and literature, exists in a delicate balance with fidelity to the identity of the original work.

Rosen cautions us to avoid doctrinaire extremes when approaching art of the past. To understand Shakespeare only as an Elizabethan or Jacobean theatergoer would understand him, or to modernize his plays with no sense of what they bring from his age, deforms the work, making it less ambiguous and inherently less interesting. For a work to remain alive, it must change character over time while preserving a valid witness to its earliest state. When twentieth-century scholars transformed Mozart's bland, idealized nineteenth-century image into that of a modern revolutionary expressionist, they paradoxically restored the reputation he had among his eighteenth-century contemporaries. Mozart became once again a complex innovator, challenging to perform and to understand.

Drawing on a variety of critical methods, Rosen maintains that listening or reading with intensity-for pleasure-is the one activity indispensable for full appreciation. It allows us to experience multiple possibilities in literature and music, and to avoid recognizing only the revolutionary elements of artistic production. By reviving the sense that works of art have intrinsic merits that bring pleasure, we justify their continuing existence.


Is there a moment in history when a work receives its ideal interpretation? Or is perpetual negotiation required to preserve the past and accommodate the present? The freedom of interpretation, Charles Rosen suggests in these sparkling explorations, exists in a delicate balance with fidelity to the identity of the original work.

Publisher: Cambridge, Mass. : Harvard University Press, ©2012
ISBN: 9780674065499
0674065492
9780674047525
0674047524
Characteristics: 1 online resource (vii, 438 pages) : illustrations
data file,rda

Opinion

From the critics


Community Activity

Comment

Add a Comment

There are no comments for this title yet.

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability

There are no age suitabilities for this title yet.

Summary

Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.

Notices

Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.

Quotes

Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Subject Headings

  Loading...

Find it at FSJPL

  Loading...
[]
[]
To Top