Antonie Brentano (née Birkenstock) is a controversial figure in Beethoven studies. Born in Vienna and wife to the Frankfurt-based businessman Franz Brentano, she was for a long time considered the leading candidate for the recipient of the mysterious “immortal beloved” (unsterbliche Geliebte) letter of 1812. She has now, after extensive and controversial research, assumed more-or-less … Continue reading “Beethoven’s Language of Consolation”
“A poet who alludes creatively is not a passive copyist, and a poetic whole may take up within itself a consciousness of echoes.” – Christopher Ricks[i] Brahms’s Op. 54 Schicksalslied contains a striking gesture of literary revisionism. The text of this 1868 work, taken from Hölderlin’s Hyperion, is effectively a one-note elegy reflecting on the … Continue reading “Aspects of Proustian Memory and Narrativity in Brahms’s Op. 51 Quartets”
(I adapted this piece from an essay I wrote at Oxford. The tone is stuffier than I generally try to aim for in this blog, but I stand by what it says. I’m also, to be honest, pretty proud that I managed to research and write this essay the space of two days.) It is … Continue reading “Plath’s Psychological Landscapes”
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