A Place at the Edge: Reflections on Schubert’s Late Style

Byrne Bodley, Lorraine (2015) A Place at the Edge: Reflections on Schubert’s Late Style. Oxford German Studies, 44 (1). pp. 18-29. ISSN 1745-9214

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In 1822 Franz Schubert contracted syphilis and became aware that he had only a short time to live. The last six years of his life, in which he valiantly struggled to overcome his anguish and despair, were a period of exceptional creativity. This article will examine the relationship between the act of composing and the process of dying in Schubert’s late years, during which he composed an array of ambitious works in which he adapted genre conventions to the occasion. Was the unearthly serenity that permeates this work an escape from the fierce weather of the mind? Or are the irreconcilable antinomies in Schubert’s late works musical proof of Yeats’s belief: ‘A man awaits his end dreading and hoping all’? This article is an attempt to explore the antinomies in Schubert’s ‘late’ works and to answer to such rhetorical musings.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: late style; Schubert’s aesthetic crisis; 1818–23; Schubert’s final years; Schubert’s final illness and death; antinomies in Schubert’s reception history; life and art; Winterreise; ‘Der Doppelgänger’; ‘Der Atlas’; ‘Die Taubenpost’;
Academic Unit: Faculty of Arts,Celtic Studies and Philosophy > Music
Item ID: 7464
Identification Number: 10.1179/0078719114Z.00000000072
Depositing User: Dr. Lorraine Byrne Bodley
Date Deposited: 23 Sep 2016 10:54
Journal or Publication Title: Oxford German Studies
Publisher: Maney Publishing
Refereed: Yes

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