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[microsound] emotions in music

Damian, (and to all others interested)

I think a good place to look for critical insights about emotions in
music is Eduard Hanslick's  "On Musical Beauty." In it, he argues that
a musical work's aesthetic value is not contingent on the degree of
emotional response it produces in the listener, but rather in the
combinations of its formal elements--tone color, dynamic shifts,
tempo, etc. (This is probably why Hanslick has fallen out of favor:
he'a a pure formalist, and he was also only able to write about
classical music and the forms that preceded it. But "On Musical
Beauty" is probably the most rigorous approach to the "problems" that
emtotions pose to our aesthetic evaluations of music, and whether a
specific kind of emotional response is necessary to music's aesthetic
value. Hanslick also uses a sort of a Kantian approach that I don't
necessarily buy into, but it's a compelling book nonetheless.



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