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Forbidden Music: The Jewish Composers Banned by the Nazis [Hardcover]

Michael Haas
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
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Book Description

2 April 2013
With National Socialism's arrival in Germany in 1933, Jews dominated music more than virtually any other sector, making it the most important cultural front in the Nazi fight for German identity. This groundbreaking book looks at the Jewish composers and musicians banned by the Third Reich and the consequences for music throughout the rest of the twentieth century. Because Jewish musicians and composers were, by 1933, the principal conveyors of Germany's historic traditions and the ideals of German culture, the isolation, exile and persecution of Jewish musicians by the Nazis became an act of musical self-mutilation. Michael Haas looks at the actual contribution of Jewish composers in Germany and Austria before 1933, at their increasingly precarious position in Nazi Europe, their forced emigration before and during the war, their ambivalent relationships with their countries of refuge, such as Britain and the United States and their contributions within the radically changed post-war music environment.

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Yale University Press; 1st ed edition (2 April 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0300154305
  • ISBN-13: 978-0300154306
  • Product Dimensions: 24 x 16.6 x 3.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 508,387 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

"A tragic and epic story that Haas relates so magisterially well that this book will probably remain definitive on its subject for the foreseeable future."-Booklist, starred review Booklist "A valuable compendium of untold stories, a corrective to standard histories of music and an essential reference point for anyone engaged in the culture and politics of the twentieth century."-Norman Lebrecht, Wall Street Journal -- Norman Lebrecht Wall Street Journal "An outstandingly fine piece of work."-Terry Teachout, Commentary -- Terry Teachout Commentary "A richly detailed history of Jewish musicians."-Kirkus Kirkus Reviews "[T]his compelling exploration of the role Jewish musicians and composers played in the cultural life of the Prussian and Austro-Hungarian Empire... is rich in unexpected facts and quotes... Its greatest virtue is the unearthing of composers, critics, conductors and musicians destined for obscurity. Haas makes a pleasingly detailed argument for honouring a treasure trove to which the development of Western music owes a considerable debt."-Rebecca K Morrison, The Independent -- Rebecca K. Morrison Independent "This is a big and important book...that really must be read by anyone with even a passing interest in the music of this period. One closes it with a mixture of astonishment and admiration."-Peter Franklin, Opera Magazine -- Peter Franklin Opera Magazine Winner in the 2014 Association for Recorded Sound Collections Awards for Excellence for the best historical Research in Classical Music category. -- ARSC Awards for Excellence Association for Recorded Sound Collections "Michael Haas makes [his] case powerfully in his important book."-James Loeffler, The New Republic -- James Loeffler The New Republic

About the Author

Michael Haas is director of research at the Jewish Music Institute's Centre for Suppressed Music, based at Royal Holloway, University of London. He lives in London.

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fascinating book 18 Aug 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This is a very thorough and interesting account of the story of so many composers and musicians and of the regime that tried to suppress them. As well as dealing with the fate of composers and musicians who had flourished in central Europe before the rise of Nazism, the part of the the book dealing with the nineteenth century background and Wagner is fascinating. Perhaps mosy interesting of all is the light Michael Haas' book sheds on the process of "de-Nazification" and the part played by the allies and the effect this had on post-war culture. A really important volume.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A very scholarly and informative book 15 Aug 2013
By LANGERS
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
The first 200 pages deal with the treatment of Jews and Jewish composers from the end of the 19th century up until the Nazis came to power in 1933. I found the second half the most interesting and in particular how countries reacted to the arrival of these composers as refugees. Sad how few of them are remembered to-day
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb!! 8 Sep 2013
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Michael Haas has written an absolutely wonderful book that is filled with fascinating information. I highly recommend it to musicians, composers, conductors, musicologists, and ancestors of the artists he writes about! Michaels book is long overdue, and extremely thorough.
Jean V. Forman
Granddaughter of Dr. Wilhelm Grosz
New York, NY.
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4 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting subject 7 July 2013
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
A well presented account of the history of several prominent composers who were banned by the Nazis because they were Jewish. Some errors of fact (the populations of Germany and the USA were not identical in 1914 (p13), they were 60 and 90 million respectably) and various other slights of accuracy make one somewhat sceptical of the accuracy in other areas. Nevertheless, worth a look for those who are interested in the subject generally.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.8 out of 5 stars  4 reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Let Us Remember and Never Forget 25 Aug 2013
By Michael Shapiro - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Michael Haas has written a brilliant and moving book about the composers who were affected - some murdered, others exiled - by the Shoah. There's no book like this, written by someone who knows the music deeply and cares completely about making it resound. A brilliant tour de force! Thank you, Michael.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An extraordinary book 24 Aug 2013
By S. Mitchell Freedman - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
This remarkable book is a "must-read" not only for classical music lovers but for anyone interested in trying to understand how the unspeakable horrors of the first and second world wars happened. His musicological knowledge has brought me great new insights into music I have known and loved but he has also opened my eyes and ears to an enormous amount of music I never knew existed. He reviews the history of Europe in the 19th and 20th centuries in its descent into hell from the perspective of music. A stellar achievement. The book is eminently readable and hard to put down.
5 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Authoritative but disappointing 9 Aug 2013
By Allan Ulrich - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This volume covers a period in 20th century music that represents the triumph of barbarism. Haas, who produced the great "Degenerate Music" CD series for Decca 20 years ago, is impeccable on the history and biography of these uprooted and doomed artists. However, I was hoping for more details on the music itself. That, after all, is where our interest should ultimately lie. Perhaps, a second volume is in order.
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars 29 Sep 2014
By jeffrey - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
It truly informed you about scope of the intellectual abyss the the Nazi s created even before the killing
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