A Language Of Its Own: Sense And Meaning In The Making Of Western Art Music

Paperback | August 12, 2013

byRuth Katz

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The Western musical tradition has produced not only music, but also countless writings about music that remain in continuous—and enormously influential—dialogue with their subject. With sweeping scope and philosophical depth, A Language of Its Own traces the past millennium of this ongoing exchange.

Ruth Katz argues that the indispensible relationship between intellectual production and musical creation gave rise to the Western conception of music. This evolving and sometimes conflicted process, in turn, shaped the art form itself. As ideas entered music from the contexts in which it existed, its internal language developed in tandem with shifts in intellectual and social history. Katz explores how this infrastructure allowed music to explain itself from within, creating a self-referential and rational foundation that has begun to erode in recent years.

A magisterial exploration of a frequently overlooked intersection of Western art and philosophy, A Language of Its Own restores music to its rightful place in the history of ideas.  

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The Western musical tradition has produced not only music, but also countless writings about music that remain in continuous—and enormously influential—dialogue with their subject. With sweeping scope and philosophical depth, A Language of Its Own traces the past millennium of this ongoing exchange.Ruth Katz argues that the indispensib...

Ruth Katz is the Emanuel Alexandre Professor Emerita of Musicology at Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

other books by Ruth Katz

Format:PaperbackDimensions:242 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.9 inPublished:August 12, 2013Publisher:University Of Chicago PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0226425975

ISBN - 13:9780226425979

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“Intertwining musicology with cultural and intellectual history, Ruth Katz produces an almost unnervingly brilliant philosophical history of sound. Following in the footsteps of Max Weber, Katz is able to draw upon semiotics—as Weber was not—to understand musical rationalization. Reconstructing Western music as a signifying system without concrete referent, A Language of Its Own inserts music analysis into contemporary debates about culture and social theory.”