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Humanism, Love and Music

Translated by Ernest Bernhardt-Kabisch

Constantin Floros

«Music is no mere play of sound, no mere tonal texture, but has a significant psychic, spiritual/intellectual and social dimension. In other words: a musical art work is not merely an autonomous artifact but also document humain.» With this thesis – and with a view to the question as to the meaning of music as such – the author opens his broadly designed plea for a «humane music.» Based on interdisciplinary researches, and making use of partly unfamiliar documents, he demonstrates on musical works from Monteverdi to Alban Berg how and why they can be heard and understood as a tonal language specifically of love. The study investigates the question of how changes in the conception of love are reflected in music and concludes with a warning of a dehumanized world.