1st Edition

Form vs. Work A Major Antinomy of Music Theory and Analysis

By Ildar D. Khannanov Copyright 2024
    338 Pages 79 B/W Illustrations
    by Jenny Stanford Publishing

    338 Pages 79 B/W Illustrations
    by Jenny Stanford Publishing

    The antinomy of musical work and musical form has been central for music theory for centuries. Musical work is complete and all-inclusive, which makes it an ideal object of study. However, the teaching of musical form, albeit selective, is self-sufficient and epistemologically sovereign. The book offers both the historical overview and the analytical discourse on this antinomy in both Western and Russian perspectives. It presents an insider’s view of the latter and contains materials never previously published.


    1.       The Antinomy of Musical Form vs. Work: Integralism vs. Formalism

    2.       Early Stages of Integralism in Russia: Eleventh through Seventeenth Centuries

    3.       Encounters with Western Formalism: Seventeenth-Twentieth Centuries

    4.       Reemergence of Integralism in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries

    5.       Late Soviet and Post-Soviet Developments of the Opposition Form vs. Work

    6.       Sample Analyses: Formalist, Integralist and Mixed

    7.       In Lieu of Conclusion: Contemplation on the Categories of the Whole, Logos and Theory


    Ildar D. Khannanov is associate professor of music theory at Peabody Institute, Johns Hopkins University. He is a student of Yuri Kholopov (Moscow Conservatory), Pieter C. Van den Toorn (University of California, Santa Barbara), and Jacques Derrida (University of California, Irvine) and is a member of the Scientific Committee of EuroMAC. His scholarly interests range from music theory and analysis to philosophy, Soviet music theory, musical semiotics, ethnomusicology, and film music. Dr Khannanov has authored books and articles in English and Russian languages, including The Nonverbal Specificity of Music: Music Beyond Logos (2019), Music of Sergei Rachmaninoff: Seven Musical-Theoretical Etudes (2011), translation of Boleslav Yavorsky’s treatise The Design of Musical Speech (2022), chapters in Sounding the Virtual: Gilles Deleuze and the Theory and Philosophy of Music (2011), L’Analyse aujourd’hui (2015), and The Routledge Companion on Music and Space (2023). He actively participates in international conferences globally and took part in organizing the 10th European Music Analysis Conference (EuroMAC-10).

    This book provides an overview of two competing approaches to classical composition in Russian-Soviet musicological tradition: the so-called ‘integralist’ and ‘formalist’ approaches. Combining historical, aesthetic, and theoretical perspectives, the author sets the frame for a stimulating discussion of the concepts of ‘musical form’ and ‘musical work’ and their implications for music analysis. A valuable contribution to the field, this material will be useful for anyone who is interested in comparative cultural studies.

    Dr Julia Galieva-Szokolay

    The Glenn Gould School, The Royal Conservatory of Music, Canada


    This book combines the approach to a very important theoretical problem—correlation of form with musical work—with an accent on the Russian music theory. The author shows the Russian theoretical tradition in its specifics, underlining the role of some key figures, such as Yavorsky, Asafiev, Losef, Tsukkermann, Mazel’, Kholopov, and Kholopova within the larger international context, from Byzantine theory to Rameau, A. B. Marx, Riemann, Caplin, and Hepokoski. All this makes this book very useful in both pragmatic and theoretical applications.


    Prof. Konstantin Zenkin

    Moscow State Tchaikovsky Conservatory, Russia