Musico-poetics in Perspective: Calvin S. Brown in Memoriam

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Ulrich Weisstein, Jean-Louis Cupers
Rodopi, 2000 - 313 pages
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The volume is dedicated to the memory of the late Calvin S. Brown of the University of Georgia, author of the first systematically conceived survey - Music and Literature: A Comparison of the Arts (1948) - of the branch of interart studies now generally known as Melopoetics. Part One consists of six original contributions by experts from Austria, Belgium, France, and the United States. Authored by a novelist and a composer/scholar, respectively, the first two essays - Jean Libis's "Inspiration musicale et composition littéraire: Réflexions sur un roman schubertien" and David M. Hertz's "The Composer's Musico-Literary Experience: Reflections on Song Writing" - focus, not surprisingly, on the creative process. The third piece - Francis' Claudon's review of the pertinent research done between 1970 and 1990 - complements the honoree's analogous report on the preceding decades, reprinted in the present volume, whereas the fourth - Jean-Louis Cupers' "Métaphores de l'écho et de l'ombre: Regards sur l'évolution des études musico-littéraires" - surveys the plethora of metaphorical applications, in music and literature, of two significant natural phenomena, the one acoustic and the other optical. Linked to each other, the two remaining papers - Ulrich Weisstein's "The Miracle of Interconnectedness: Calvin S. Brown, a Critical Biography" and Walter Bernhart's "A Profile in Retrospect: Calvin S. Brown as a Musico-Literary Scholar" - offer critical accounts of the honoree's theoretical and methodological stance as viewed, in the first case, from a biographical angle and, in the second, in the light of subsequent scholarly practice.
Part Two bundles eleven of Professor Brown's previously uncollected articles, covering a period of nearly half a century of significant scholarly activity in the field. The selection demonstrates Brown's poignant interest in transpositions d'art exemplifying the "musicalization" of literature in the formal and structural, rather than thematic, domain as culminating in his trenchant critique of "music in poetry" as understood, somewhat naïvely, by Mallarmé and his critics, and, to a slightly lesser extent, by his translation of Josef Weinhebers' variations on Friedrich Hölderlin's ode "An die Parzen". Just as Professor Brown's successive anatomies of melopoetic theory and practice illustrate his steadily growing sophistication and the maturing of his mind, so his Bloomington lecture "The Writing and Reading of Language and Music: Thoughts on Some Parallels Between two Artistic Media" reflects his unique ability to assemble, and organize, vast materials and comprehensive data in such a way as to reveal the underlying pattern.

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Jean Libis
David Michael Hertz
Francis Claudon
Métaphores de lécho et de lombre
Ulrich Weisstein
A Profile in Retrospect
Calvin S Browns Legacy
The Poetic Use of Musical Forms 1944
The Musical Analogies in Mallarmés Un Coup de Dés 1967
Josef Weinhebers Hölderlin Variations
MusicoLiterary Research in the Last
Theme and Variations as a Literary Form 1978
Literature and Music A Developing Field of Study 1980
The Writing and Reading of Language and Music
Theoretical Foundations for the Study of the Mutual
Notes on the Contributors

The Joe Fisher Symphony 1959

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Page 241 - ... with charm of earliest birds, pleasant the sun, when first on this delightful land he spreads his orient beams, on herb, tree, fruit, and flower glistering with dew, fragrant the fertile earth after soft showers, and sweet the coming on of grateful evening mild, then silent night with this her solemn bird, and this fair moon and these the gems of heaven, her starry train.
Page 138 - ... the form from the mind) that the pleasure is constructed; and therefore it is that people of equally good ear differ so much in this point from one another. Now opium, by greatly increasing the activity of the mind, generally increases, of necessity, that particular mode of its activity by which we are able to construct out of the raw material of organic sound an elaborate intellectual pleasure.
Page 241 - With this her solemn bird, and this fair moon, And these the gems of heaven, her starry train: But neither breath of morn, when she ascends With charm of earliest birds; nor rising sun On this delightful land; nor herb, fruit...
Page 62 - I took her hand in mine, and we went out of the ruined place ; and as the morning mists had risen long ago when I first left the forge, so the evening mists were rising now, and in all the broad expanse of tranquil light they showed to me, I saw no shadow of another parting from her.
Page 143 - A thousand times, amongst the phantoms of sleep, have I seen thee entering the gates of the golden dawn— with the secret word riding before thee — with the armies of the grave behind thee : seen thee sinking, rising, raving, despairing...
Page 138 - The mistake of most people is, to suppose that it is by the ear they communicate with music, and therefore that they are purely passive to its effects. But this is not so; it is by the reaction of the mind upon the notices of the ear (the matter coming by the senses, the form from the mind) that the pleasure is constructed ; and therefore it is that people of equally good ear differ so much in this point from one another.
Page 175 - ... et leur éparpillement en frissons articulés proches de l'instrumentation, un art d'achever la transposition, au Livre, de la symphonie ou uniment de reprendre notre bien : car, ce n'est pas de sonorités élémentaires par les cuivres, les cordes, les bois, indéniablement...
Page 241 - But neither breath of morn, when she ascends With charm of earliest birds; nor rising sun On this delightful land; nor herb, fruit, flower, Glistering with dew; nor fragrance after showers; Nor grateful evening mild; nor silent night With this her solemn bird; nor walk by moon, Or glittering starlight, without thee is sweet.
Page 155 - Art, — wherein man nowise speaks to men, Only to mankind, —Art may tell a truth Obliquely, do the thing shall breed the thought, Nor wrong the thought• missing the mediate word. So may you paint your picture, twice show truth, Beyond mere imagery on the wall, — So, note by note, bring music from your mind, Deeper than ever e'en Beethoven dived, — So write a book shall mean beyond the facts, Suffice the eye and save the soul beside.
Page 143 - Us, that, with laurelled heads, were passing from the cathedral, they overtook, and, as with a garment, they wrapped us round with thunders greater than our own. As brothers we moved together; to the dawn that advanced, to the stars that fled; rendering thanks to God in the highest...

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