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By William Russo

Even though it may be of basic curiosity to people who are engaged in composition themselves, [this] e-book can be urged for readers who might need to realize additional perception into simply what makes jazz composition so diverse from conventional techniques.

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In his bravura final lines he nevertheless urges composers to look into psychoanalysis: if it doesn’t bring you any direct profit, ‘you can damage your competitors. ’32 At the risk of doing precisely what Schoenberg lampoons, one wonders whether he protests – or at least satirizes – a little too much here. ’ might date not from 1932, but from 1933 when Robert Haven Schauffler’s book The Unknown Brahms: His Life, Character and Works was first published. Schoenberg makes direct reference to this book in an essay entitled ‘Menschenrechte’ (Human Rights), which seems to take psychoanalysis perfectly seriously: Music speaks in its own language of purely musical matters – or, perhaps, as most aestheticians believe, of matters of feeling and fantasy.

As discussed in Chapter 2, members of his circle attributed not only a priest-like authority to Schoenberg, but a Christlike redemptive power – which itself was apparently secret to the group. The importance of secrecy also continued until at least the late twenties, when it was re-emphasized in both draft and final versions of his Tendenzstück (political play) Der biblische Weg. In the play, each official ‘has his own assigned duty, and does not learn more than is needed to execute it wisely .

Trauma-like features emerge in Schoenberg’s Nachlass as, from the early 1920s, meaning is temporarily fractured. I say ‘tentatively’ because Schoenberg’s own silences involved active secrecy and recourse to an aesthetics of the unutterable in addition to having manifest certain features of traumatic response, and drawing clear distinctions between the two is not straightforward. ‘Trauma theory’, as it has come to be known, developed in close connection with the possibility of using survivor testimony in writing about the 28 Schoenberg, history, trauma?

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