First published in 1990, this book was the first comprehensive study of Balzac’s relationship to music, blending past scholarship with new perspectives to formulate an inclusive account. It begins by examining the contacts and experiences that shaped the musical side of Balzac’s life. These left valuable and lasting impressions which often found their way into his writings, where he recorded a myriad of critical and musicological opinions — assessed primarily in relation to Gambara and Massimilla Doni. These discussions prepare the way for an analysis of Balzac two major musical persuasions: religious music and Beethoven. This book will be of interest to students of literature and music.
Table of Contents
Preface; List of abbreviations; Introduction; Part One: Music in Balzac’s Life and Time; 1. The Enticement of Sound 2. Shallow Enchantments 3. Celebrated Musician Friends 4. An Otherwise Forgotten Teacher; Part Two: Debates, Premises, and Balzac’s Comments; 5. From Beyond the Alps and Rhine 6. Critical Estimates; Part Three: Balzac’s Major Persuasions; 7. Religious Music: An Innate Affinity 8. Beethoven: The Growth of a Concept; Part Four: Balzac’s Musical Tales and Their Implications; 9. Gambara: Preserving Idealism 11. Massimilla Doni: Transcending Sensualism 11. An Animating Psychology 12. A Dynamic Philosophy; Appendix; 1. Synopses of the Operas 2. Musical Compositions Indpired by Balzac’s Works 3. Auber’s Music for the Romance in Modeste Mignon; Notes; Bibliography; Outline of the Chapters; Index