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Proof through the NightMusic and the Great War$
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Glenn Watkins

Print publication date: 2002

Print ISBN-13: 9780520231580

Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520231580.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CALIFORNIA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.california.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of California Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CALSO for personal use (for details see http://california.universitypressscholarship.com/page/535/privacy-policy-and-legal-notice).date: 17 July 2018

Ceremonials and the War of Nerves

Ceremonials and the War of Nerves

Chapter:
(p.372) 21 Ceremonials and the War of Nerves
Source:
Proof through the Night
Author(s):

Glenn Watkins

Publisher:
University of California Press
DOI:10.1525/california/9780520231580.003.0022

Ceremonies centering on the remembrance of soldiers who had fallen in battle proved crucial to the consolidation of a post-Great War psyche, and the various shrines of the Unknown Soldier that appeared in virtually every country attested to the purgative value of such commemorative sites. In 1917, Charles Villiers Stanford wrote an organ sonata with a Great War motif, subtitled “Eroica.” That the nostalgia carried by many of the tunes of the period preserved their power for later generations was made evident in a ceremony of May 14, 1998 at Arlington National Cemetery. Among the multiple characterizations of the post-Armistice period, the one cited most frequently was neurasthenic exhaustion. Not only had the idea of the soldiers' frayed nerves been medically acknowledged in the expression “shell shock,” but society at large had also become increasingly aware that it was no simple matter to pick up where they had left off at the outset of the war. This chapter also examines jazz and the “lost generation,” as well as George Antheil and the suppression of sentiment.

Keywords:   Great War, ceremonies, remembrance, soldiers, Charles Villiers Stanford, Arlington National Cemetery, shell shock, jazz, lost generation, George Antheil

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