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Contents

Music in the Nineteenth Century

RECONCILIATION AND BACKLASH

Chapter:
CHAPTER 13 The Return of the Symphony
Source:
MUSIC IN THE NINETEENTH CENTURY
Author(s):
Richard Taruskin
Reconciliation and Backlash

ex. 13-16a Johannes Brahms, Symphony no. 1, IV, mm. 391–395

That is the meaning of dialectics: mutual transformation through mutual accommodation. And that, for liberals, is the meaning of tradition: a past that enables the present, but that in the process is itself transformed. Yet whatever is transformed also maintains recognizable (and legitimating) ties with its former guise. Ultimately, going against the New German insistence on historical progress and directed evolution, Brahms believed in the “timelessness” of artistic problems and artistic greatness. That is what Bach symbolized (and has continued ever since to symbolize within the post-Brahms tradition of “classical music”). And beyond Bach, that is what nature (the Alphorn theme) and religion (the chorale theme) have always symbolized: everything that is “beyond history, unchanging, constant, essentially at rest,”35 in Brinkmann's apt summary, and yet ever adaptable to new conditions and needs. That, too, is classic liberalism (“We hold these truths to be self-evident…”).

Citation (MLA):
Richard Taruskin. "Chapter 13 The Return of the Symphony." The Oxford History of Western Music. Oxford University Press. New York, USA. n.d. Web. 23 Apr. 2014. <http://www.oxfordwesternmusic.com/view/Volume3/actrade-9780195384833-div1-013009.xml>.
Citation (APA):
Taruskin, R. (n.d.). Chapter 13 The Return of the Symphony. In Oxford University Press, Music in the Nineteenth Century. New York, USA. Retrieved 23 Apr. 2014, from http://www.oxfordwesternmusic.com/view/Volume3/actrade-9780195384833-div1-013009.xml
Citation (Chicago):
Richard Taruskin. "Chapter 13 The Return of the Symphony." In Music in the Nineteenth Century, Oxford University Press. (New York, USA, n.d.). Retrieved 23 Apr. 2014, from http://www.oxfordwesternmusic.com/view/Volume3/actrade-9780195384833-div1-013009.xml
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