Music and the skillful listener : American women compose the by Denise von Von Glahn

By Denise von Von Glahn

For Denise Von Glahn, listening is that specific caliber afforded ladies who've been fettered for generations through the maxim "be obvious and never heard." In tune and the Skillful Listener, Von Glahn explores the connection among listening and musical composition concentrating on 9 American ladies composers encouraged through the sounds of the wildlife: Amy seashore, Marion Bauer, Louise Talma, Pauline Oliveros, Joan Tower, Ellen Taaffe Zwilich, Victoria Bond, Libby Larsen, and Emily Doolittle. Von Glahn situates "nature composing" one of the higher culture of nature writing and argues that, like their literary sisters, works of those girls exhibit deeply held non secular and aesthetic ideals approximately nature. Drawing on a wealth of archival and unique resource fabric, Von Glahn skillfully employs literary and gender reviews, ecocriticism and ecomusicology, and the bigger global of latest musicological idea to inform the tales of 9 ladies composers who search to appreciate nature via music.

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Beyond the gift of his music, I appreciate his willingness to engage in an email conversation with me and then allow me to quote from that exchange. All the goodwill and help from those I’ve listed above would come to nothing if it weren’t for the dedicated professionals at Indiana University Press. I’m grateful to Jane Kupersmith, who deftly cultivated this project in its beginning stages. She encouraged me to write the book that I imagined free of constraints, either from without or within. It was a joy to work with Jane.

In May 2010, the Thomas Cole National Historic Site in Catskill, New York, mounted a small exhibition of twenty-five artworks created by accomplished women artists whose last names were more often associated with their famous male relatives, much like Susan Fenimore Cooper. “Remember the Ladies: Women of the Hudson River School” included works by Sarah Cole, Thomas Cole’s sister, and his niece Emily Cole; Harriet Cany Peale, wife of Charles Wilson Peale’s son Rembrandt Peale; and Evelina (Nina) Mount, daughter of Henry Mount and niece of William Sidney Mount; among a handful of pieces by other nature-inspired painting women.

Travel to archives was made possible by support from my area’s Curtis Mayes Orpheus Fund in Musicology. I’m indebted to Douglass Seaton, Frank Gunderson, Charles Brewer, and Michael Bakan for nurturing creativity. In 2009 the university awarded me financial assistance and time away from teaching duties through a grant from the Committee on Faculty Research Support (COFRS). The grant proved essential to conducting interviews, consulting research, and writing the first three chapters. Numerous other colleagues in the College of Music offered a collaborative hand.

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