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Philosophy of modern music Unknown Binding – 1994

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Product details

  • Unknown Binding: 220 pages
  • Publisher: Continuum (1994)
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00072K0FQ
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 7,438,767 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By Ismo Kantola on 22 Feb. 2015
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
the first english translation. an important piece of our cultural history
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0 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Jeremy Clayton on 17 Oct. 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The translator could surely have done better to make a turgid though important original text readable. I'm afraid I quickly gave up the struggle.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 3 reviews
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
poor translation 7 July 2006
By Steward Willons - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Adorno's Philosophy of New Music gets five stars. This translation gets two stars. It's notoriously unreliable and full of errors. Instead, buy Robert Hullot-Kentor's translation titled, "Philosophy of New Music" (he explains why this is the correct translation of the title rather than *Modern* music.) That edition is far superior with an amazing introduction provided by the always perceptive Hullot-Kentor. Read Adorno as he was meant to be read. Don't buy this translation.
15 of 22 people found the following review helpful
Still a nourishing display of conceptual power. 30 July 1999
By Rachel Abbinanti (tusai1@aol.com) - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Although out-of-print this is an event in the history of music comparable to primary musical works.It had to be Theodor Adorno a consummate intellect that created a new mode of contemplating contemporary art, music simply being the realm he knew more intimately,literature a close second. His prolific student from the late Fifties, Jurgen Habermas once said of Adorno, that he created theory spontaneously, simply within the course of a discussion, adept at synthesizing his thoughts as he spoke. But Adorno's importance for contemporary expression was assured,in that Adorno brought the complexity of philosophic,social and political thought to music. Something hardly done prior, and is only now within the past ten years beginning to be realized. See numerous studies on Adorno and his approach to speaking about music. To read the "Philosophy of Modern Music" is to understand Adorno's departures for his thought is the most exposed. Written in short cursive, aphorisitic-like paragraphs, almost approaching a sketch of a thought is to reveal a complexity, but one which engages his subject. The two polar opposites here are composers, Arnold Schoenberg(representing the progressive elements in music), and Igor Stravinsky(representing the backward-looking retrogressive elements). Adorno had considered the private artist working in seclusion as the highest form of rebellion, of subversion, for Adorno had contempt for the marketplace and how that magnetized and transformed art. Something of the market, in the late Forties was prevalent in jazz and film. Had Adorno lived into the age of computers and simulation,he would have seen to full extent how his thought has been realized in ever purified forms. Adorno thought Schoenberg's discovery of the 12-Tone dodecaphonic compositional method as a sign of progress. 12-Tone in a profound way was a synthesis, a conduit of the theoretical advancements of the history of music.It was both a beginning and an endpoint. But Schoenberg's method, althought quite new and unfinished allowed for all the parameters of music to be defined and developed, "Total Organization of the Elements of Music" is one paragraph here or section, "Differetiation and Coarseness" yet another referring to thinking about sound, as a sculptor would of his/her materials, shapting them, giving them form and direction. Stravinsky contrarywise indulged in looking backward, at the folksongs of his native Russia for music materials to be manipulated and the projection of sound without its deep attenuation. A view that is subjective now in retrospect,for Stravinsky was a grand orchestrator and a craftsman. But in Stravinsky, in particular his early period of the marvelously powerful ballet music, sound is pulverized,and is forced into suppressed forms,usually ashifting alternating suite of pieces,refocusing our short attention spans as required and, all in the projection of an image, a screeen for which the ballet takes place. But Adorno had takened issue with Stravinsky's subject matter as well as his technical means, a puppet in "Petrouska" one given over to a master without hope nor recourse.Likewise the "Rite of Spring" a virgin is simply sacrificed without recourse and we have the human image portraying the inevitability of natural forces, something Europe was about to experience first hand with the rise of fascism. These sections here are "Depersonalization" and "Fetishism of Means", explains Stravinsky's creativity stepping backwards within himself. In "Modes of Listening" Adorno refers to the "Shock" value that pummels the listener and the degradation of hearing into a music you merely submit to, whereas in Schoenberg there is more a sense of give and take,of the music allowing contemplative time. Again to my mind this is all relative, for these festures I find in both composers oeuvre. Still I find a conceptual power in Adorno,one that still nourishes today in the mileau of after-postmodernity.
Once the only translation; since then has been superceded. 4 Jun. 2012
By Bob G. - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The newer translation by Robert Hullot-Kentor is more comprehensible (to a non-German speaker) than this version. This was the only widely-available translation until recently.
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