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Leonard BernsteinThe Political Life of an American Musician$
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Barry Seldes

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780520257641

Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520257641.001.0001

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The Long Sixties

The Long Sixties


(p.87) Chapter Four The Long Sixties
Leonard Bernstein

Barry Seldes

University of California Press

This chapter describes the Gustav Mahler centennial that was celebrated by the Philharmonic in 1960. It looks at Bernstein's work, the Kaddish, which had great political significance and transformed theology into political sociology. It looks at his role in the civil rights and antiwar movement, as well as his positions on the nature and exercise of American power. It identifies and studies important events during this period, including the Selma March, the resistance to the Vietnam War, and the radicalization of Americans in the late 1960s, along with Bernstein's political evolution. The chapter also considers Bernstein's support for Senator Eugene McCarthy's campaign, and Bernstein's humiliation over his rejection of black musicians and the debate of a Black Panther fund raiser.

Keywords:   Gustav Mahler, Kaddish, theology, political sociology, civil rights, antiwar movement, American power, political evolution

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