An Unnatural Attitude

Steege Benjamin
"An Unnatural Attitude traces a style of musical thinking and listening that coalesced in the intellectual milieu of the Weimar Republic and its legacy-the phenomenological style, which involved a search for contact with the world of perception. Resisting the influence of naturalism, figures in this milieu argued for a new understanding and description of the musical experience as something based not in introspection but rather in an attitude of outward, open orientation, where musical experience acquires meaning when the act of listening is physically (materially) shared with others"--
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An Unnatural Attitude traces a style of musical thought that coalesced in the intellectual milieu of the Weimar Republic--a phenomenological style that sought to renew contact with music as a worldly circumstance. Deeply critical of the influence of naturalism in aesthetics and ethics, proponents of this new style argued for the description of music as something accessible neither through introspection nor through experimental research, but rather in an attitude of outward, open orientation toward the world. With this approach, music acquires meaning in particular when the act of listening is understood to be shared with others.

Benjamin Steege interprets this discourse as the response of a young, post-World War I generation amid a virtually uninterrupted experience of war, actual or imminent--a cohort for whom disenchantment with scientific achievement was to be answered by reasserting the value of imaginative thought. Steege draws on a wide range of published and unpublished texts from music theory, pedagogy, criticism, and philosophy of music, some of which appear for the first time in English translation in the book's appendixes. An Unnatural Attitude considers the question: What are we thinking about when we think about music in non-naturalistic terms?

More Information
Publisher University of Chicago Press
ISBN-10 022676298X
ISBN-13 9780226762982
GTIN-13 9780226762982
GTIN-14 09780226762982
Series New Material Histories of Music
Subtitle Phenomenology in Weimar Musical Thought
Author Steege Benjamin
Edition 1
Language Code eng
Page Count 312
Publication Date Apr 7, 2021
Dimension 6 in 9.1 in 1.1 in