DescriptionFranz Schubert and Martin Heidegger: Identity and Repetition in Schubert’s Impromptu in B-flat major, op. 142/3
Franz Schubert and Martin Heidegger: Identity and Repetition in Schubert’s Impromptu in B-flat major, op. 142/3
Philosophical interpretations of sonata form are relatively commonplace in musicological literature. By contrast, other than certain specific examples (Cavett-Dunsby, Littlewood, Marston, and Sisman amongst others), variation form has been somewhat neglected and is instead frequently accused of triviality and simplicity. Therefore, there has been little critical engagement with the philosophical implications of variation form, despite the form providing ample opportunity to look at ideas such as identity and repetition in ways that differ fundamentally from the possibilities offered by sonata form. This paper will examine the philosophical import of variation form in the specific context of Franz Schubert’s Impromptu in B-flat major, op. 142/3 in relation to Martin Heidegger’s philosophy.
This paper will look at Schubert’s treatment of variation form as a philosophical process and the resultant questions that arise about identity and repetition. Concepts such as identity and repetition are central to Heidegger’s philosophy, including his interpretation of being, and looking at such ideas from both a theoretical perspective and also as a musical process will show the ways in which variations examine the identity of a given theme through a process of repetition. Looking at identity and repetition in this way reveals that variation form is rather more interesting philosophically than has sometimes been assumed. Moreover, it will be seen that however disparate they might appear, Heidegger’s philosophy and Schubert’s music can be seen to deal with overlapping concepts in this context and bringing the two together will mean they can be seen from new and insightful viewpoints.
|8 Jan 2015 → 10 Jan 2015