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Contents

Music in the Early Twentieth Century

ATONALITY?

Chapter:
CHAPTER 4 Extinguishing the “Petty ‘I’ ” (Transcendentalism, I)
Source:
MUSIC IN THE EARLY TWENTIETH CENTURY
Author(s):
Richard Taruskin

The chief harmonic ingredient, the French sixth chord, remains recognizably a modified dominant chord in intervallic structure, but there is no longer any dominant function to perform. Where there is no dominant function, of course, there can be no complementary tonic function either. Hence the widespread view that Scriabin’s visionary achievement was the breakthrough into “atonality,” a concept (or at least a term) that he never knew, but one that excellently fulfills the old Hegelian promise of progress toward emancipation. What makes the view questionable for Scriabin was his continued reliance on the circles of thirds—major in the case of the whole-tone scale, minor in the case of the octatonic—that provide the symmetrical scales with a harmonic background that Scriabin continued to exploit for the sake of tonal coherence.

Citation (MLA):
Richard Taruskin. "Chapter 4 Extinguishing the “Petty ‘I’ ” (Transcendentalism, I)." The Oxford History of Western Music. Oxford University Press. New York, USA. n.d. Web. 10 Dec. 2018. <http://www.oxfordwesternmusic.com/view/Volume4/actrade-9780195384840-div1-004007.xml>.
Citation (APA):
Taruskin, R. (n.d.). Chapter 4 Extinguishing the “Petty ‘I’ ” (Transcendentalism, I). In Oxford University Press, Music in the Early Twentieth Century. New York, USA. Retrieved 10 Dec. 2018, from http://www.oxfordwesternmusic.com/view/Volume4/actrade-9780195384840-div1-004007.xml
Citation (Chicago):
Richard Taruskin. "Chapter 4 Extinguishing the “Petty ‘I’ ” (Transcendentalism, I)." In Music in the Early Twentieth Century, Oxford University Press. (New York, USA, n.d.). Retrieved 10 Dec. 2018, from http://www.oxfordwesternmusic.com/view/Volume4/actrade-9780195384840-div1-004007.xml
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