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Why Classical Music Still Matters$
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Lawrence Kramer

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780520250826

Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520250826.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CALIFORNIA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.california.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of California Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CALSO for personal use.date: 24 September 2021

Persephone's Fiddle

Persephone's Fiddle

The Value of Classical Music

(p.205) Chapter Seven Persephone's Fiddle
Why Classical Music Still Matters

Lawrence Kramer

University of California Press

This chapter illustrates the value of classical music. All classical music is for attentive hearing. It is known that classical music is supposed to be listened to in a certain way, with a certain ritualized respect. At its best, classical music is defined by discovery, and continual rediscovery. Through this discovery, music ttentively heard can become the performance of inner coherence. It can serve as the portal to an inner life understood as possessing a psychological and emotional richness that the ego enjoys and suffers but never fully masters—hence a life not wholly determined by mundane forces and responsibilities. It is conceptualized with a greater clarity, given a greater importance, and charged with a more vital function. Attention became the instrument by which the self meets the social demands of modern life or is undone by them.

Keywords:   classical music, discovery, mundane, attention, instrument

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