Desire and pleasure in seventeenth-century music [electronic resource] /
Susan McClary.
Berkeley : University of California Press, c2012.
xi, 340 p. : ill., music ; 24 cm.
0520247345 (cloth : alk. paper), 9780520247345 (cloth : alk. paper)
More Details
Berkeley : University of California Press, c2012.
0520247345 (cloth : alk. paper)
9780520247345 (cloth : alk. paper)
Licensed for access by U. of T. users.
catalogue key
Includes bibliographical references and index.
A Look Inside
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"In this book brimming with great music and great ideas, Susan McClary takes us into the sensual, even bawdy world of the seventeenth century. Its musicians developed ways to express, through tones, the longings and pleasures that the nobility hoped to experience on earth and in heaven. With McClary as our guide, we can tour this sacred and profane landscape of desire and, in our own fashion, luxuriate in its musical beauties." --Robert O. Gjerdingen, author of Music in the Galant Style "In this ambitious study, Susan McClary boldly argues that the seventeenth century was far more than the period in which an emerging tonal practice can be charted in Western music, for it was precisely in this nascent tonality, she claims, that composers discovered affective sonic expression of modern notions of self, temporality, and bodily desire. Enriched by compelling analytic examples and enlivened by McClary's characteristically vivid prose, it is a book sure to arouse the interest of music historians and theorists alike." --Thomas Christensen, general editor of Cambridge History of Western Music Theory
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 2012-07-01:
McClary's innovative early-feminist research and publications, (Feminine Endings: Music, Gender, and Sexuality, CH, Jun'91, 28-5615), an extension of the new musicology, provided the first reinterpretation of traditional narratives in music. Earlier, male musicologists, many refugees from Hitler's Germany, dominated both publication and teaching. Here, McClary (Case Western Reserve Univ.) considers the compositional mechanisms, such as the leading tone and prolonged resolution of dissonance, that composers used to simulate desire, a preoccupation of the arts in the 17th century. Opera and instrumental music such as the toccata and unmeasured prelude were opportunities for "eccentric experiments," especially for composers intimately practiced in older styles. Most interesting are McClary's examples of the continuation of modal practice contemporaneous with the beginnings of tonality, when a composer such as Bach recognized and practiced the sophistication of modal harmony. Contrary to current belief, modal practice continued to flourish for both structural and expressive purposes in Bach's music and later. This book allows readers--musicologists, performers, listeners--to find solutions to music puzzles through a greater understanding of syntax. Much of the music is available through downloaders (e.g., Spotify), but a CD would have been a useful adjunct for interpretive purposes. Provocative reading with excellent endnotes. Summing Up: Highly recommended. All readers. J. P. Ambrose emerita, University of Vermont
Review Quotes
"An enjoyable study. . . . Skillfully dissected in a series of well-chosen examples."
"An enjoyable study. . . . Skillfully dissected in a series of well-chosen examples."-- The Musical Times
"Passionate, learned and often thrilling."
"Passionate, learned and often thrilling."--
This item was reviewed in:
Choice, July 2012
To find out how to look for other reviews, please see our guides to finding book reviews in the Sciences or Social Sciences and Humanities.
Main Description
In this book, Susan McClary examines the mechanisms through which seventeenth-century musicians simulated extreme affective states--desire, divine rapture, and ecstatic pleasure. She demonstrates how every major genre of the period, from opera to religious music to instrumental pieces based on dances, was part of this striving for heightened passions by performers and listeners. While she analyzes the social and historical reasons for the high value placed on expressive intensity in both secular and sacred music, and she also links desire and pleasure to the many technical innovations of the period. McClary shows how musicians--whether working within the contexts of the Reformation or Counter-Reformation, Absolutists courts or commercial enterprises in Venice--were able to manipulate known procedures to produce radically new ways of experiencing time and the Self.
Bowker Data Service Summary
Here, Susan McClary examines the mechanisms through which 17th-century musicians simulated extreme affective states and demonstrates how every major genre of the period, from opera to religious music to instrumental pieces based on dances, was part of this striving for heightened passions.
Table of Contents
Acknowledgmentsp. vii
Prelude: The Music of Pleasure and Desirep. I
The Hydraulics of Musical Desire
The Expansion Principlep. 21
Composites, or the Still-Divided Subjectp. 45
Gendering Voice
Soprano as Fetish: Professional Singers in Early Modern Italyp. 79
Gender Ambiguities and Erotic Excess in the Operas of Cavallip. 104
Divine Love
Libidinous Theologyp. 129
Straining Belief: The Toccatap. 159
Dancing Bodies
The Social History of a Groove: Chacona, Ciaccona, Chaconne, and the Chaconnep. 193
Dancing about Power, Architecture about Dancingp. 215
La Mode Francaise
Temporality and Ideology: Qualities of Motion in Seventeenth-Century French Musicp. 241
The Dragon Cart: The Femme Fatale in Seventeenth-Century French Operap. 258
Postlude: Toward Consolidationp. 275
Notesp. 305
Indexp. 333
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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