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Arguably one of the most influential and revered figures in contemporary music theory, David Lewin (1933-2003) revolutionized the field through his work on transformational theory and theoretical methodology. David Lewin’s Morgengruß: Text, Context, Commentary presents in print for the first time Lewin’s legendary 1974 essay on Franz Schubert’s “Morgengruß,” from the composer’s song cycle, Die Schöne Müllerin. The essay was central to Lewin’s graduate teaching, and copies of it have circulated by hand through the music-scholarly community for decades. This book presents the original text of Lewin’s essay along with over 200 graphical illustrations. Lewin’s ability to present an artful and rich argument, based on a close reading of a short, “simple” score is but one of the wonders to behold in his masterful essay. At once deeply nuanced and widely accessible, Lewin’s “Morgengruß” offers insight into Schubert’s composition as well as the analytical process itself.
Along with the full text of Lewin’s essay, this book includes a small but pointed collection of essays interpreting the content and significance of Lewin’s “Morgengruß.” Drawing on current research as well as personal reflection, editors Richard Cohn and David Bard-Schwarz, along with contributors Brian Kane and Henry Klumpenhouwer, elaborate on the analytical, pedagogical, and philosophical contexts of Lewin’s work. Taken together, the editors and contributors offer a compelling account of the enduring significance of Lewin’s writing. David Lewin’s Morgengruß is a must-have for anyone with an interest in Lewin’s career, Schubert’s music, or music theory generally.
“Lewin intended his essay for readers at various levels of musical ability, including well-informed amateurs, performers, music students in general, and critics. Nevertheless, the history of the essay shows that it is most appropriate for advanced music students and music theory scholars. Highly recommended.”–Choice
About the Author
David Bard-Schwarz is Associate Professor of Music Theory at the University of North Texas College of Music. He has written three single-authored books: Listening Subjects: Music, Psychoanalysis, Culture; Listening Awry: Music and Alterity in German Culture; and An Introduction to Electronic Artthrough the Teachings of Jacques Lacan: Strangest Thing. His specialties include music theory and music and cultural studies with an emphasis on semiotics and Post-Lacanian psychoanalysis. He is active in the iARTA research cluster bringing together work in music, engineering, computer science, and the arts at UNT and is editor-in-chief of MOEBIUS, a new journal publishing criticism in cultural studies and interactive media.
Richard Cohn is Battell Professor of Music Theory at Yale University. He is author of Audacious Euphony: Chromaticism and the Triad’s Second Nature (Oxford University Press, 2012). Two of his scholarly articles have earned the Society of Music Theory’s Outstanding Publication Award. Cohn was founding editor of Oxford University Press’s Studies in Music Theory, and served as Executive Editor of the Journal of Music Theory. His current research models metric states and syntaxes in classical and world-music repertories.