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By Vanessa Agnew

The Enlightenment observed a severe engagement with the traditional concept that tune includes definite powers - it heals and pacifies, civilizes and educates. but this curiosity in musical application turns out to clash with greater notions of aesthetic autonomy that emerged whilst. In Enlightenment Orpheus, Vanessa Agnew examines this obvious clash, and provocatively questions the thought of an aesthetic-philosophical holiday among the eighteenth and 19th centuries.

Agnew persuasively connects the English vacationer and tune student Charles Burney with the traditional delusion of Orpheus. She makes use of Burney as a advisor via wide-ranging discussions of eighteenth-century musical commute, perspectives on music's healing powers, curiosity in non-European track, and issues approximately cultural id. Arguing that what humans stated approximately tune used to be relevant to a few of the nice Enlightenment debates surrounding such matters as human service provider, cultural distinction, and nationwide id, Agnew provides a brand new measurement to postcolonial reviews, which has usually emphasised the literary and visible on the fee of the aural. She additionally demonstrates that those discussions needs to be seen in context on the era's huge and well-entrenched transnational community, and emphasizes the significance of go back and forth literature in producing wisdom on the time.

a brand new and notably interdisciplinary method of the query of the facility of track - its aesthetic and historic interpretations and political makes use of - Enlightenment Orpheus will entice scholars and students in ancient musicology, ethnomusicology, German reports, eighteenth-century background, and comparative studies.

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Burney’s imperative ecu trip was once therefore strange. It opened a vista on areas that had formerly remained shuttered and grew to become him into a big cultural interlocutor among Britain and the German states. notwithstanding he had considerable detractors, supporters got here to think about him as a Captain prepare dinner of the Continent, a tourist harkening after new and uncharted sonic worlds (figure zero. 2). three tourists had commented on unique track and dance given that Tacitus remarked at the Germans. ahead of Burney, despite the fact that, the pursuit of musical wisdom was once now not in itself a motivation for shuttle. four His trips, together with an past one to France and Italy in 1770, pioneered a brand new style, the really good musical travelogue. With this got here a similar set of epistemological claims in regards to the capability of commute writing to exhibit wisdom approximately tune. accomplishing a sociological learn of tune sooner than sociology, Burney ascribed indexical prestige to song via asking who and what track was once for, what it did, and what this in flip signified approximately society at huge. This e-book makes a speciality of trips that 12 months: the first, Burney’s travel via primary Europe and the Netherlands to behavior learn for his common background of tune; the second one, Cook’s state-sponsored voyage to the four | enlightenment orpheus fi g u r e zero . 2 . James Barry (1741–1806), The Thames, or the Triumph of Navigation (1791). by means of permission of the nationwide Portrait Gallery, London. Charles Burney, at a keyboard, seems to be over the left arm of the water nymph, whereas Captain prepare dinner (below Father Thames’s compass) and different naval heroes pull the chariot towards Asia, the USA, and Africa. Pacific, the place voyagers remarked on Polynesian track. those trips have been associated by means of a minor biographical detail—Burney’s son James sailed with prepare dinner. extra importantly, the trips have been consultant of the Enlightenment enthusiasm for trip, and every in its personal means supplied a litmus try out for concepts approximately track. faced by way of unexpected vernaculars and new functionality practices, the tourists have been pressured to ascertain long-standing assumptions approximately tune. was once music’s motion common or relative? What used to be its social objective? How did it mediate among societies? And on what grounds may perhaps one type of tune be known as more suitable to a different? The overdue eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century reception of those shuttle findings coincided with decisive cultural adjustments in western Europe, really within the field of tune. in the beginning of our interval within the 1760s and 1770s, German instrumental track used to be nonetheless thought of not so good as French and Italian vocal track; but, by means of the 1810s or so, the German states have been now not terra incognita, and German tune was once being known as the very apogee of human creative success. the duty of this e-book, then, is to enquire the connection among Enlightenment shuttle and evolving musical notion. by means of studying the types of cultural and political investments in Anglo-German writings approximately song, I argue that the musical come upon was once a serious website for figuring out the various new aesthetic principles.

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