The Music Libel Against the Jews (Paperback)Ruth HaCohen (author)
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This deeply imaginative and wide-ranging book shows how, since the first centuries of the Christian era, gentiles have associated Jews with noise. Ruth HaCohen focuses her study on a "musical libel"-a variation on the Passion story that recurs in various forms and cultures in which an innocent Christian boy is killed by a Jew in order to silence his "harmonious musicality." In paying close attention to how and where this libel surfaces, HaCohen covers a wide swath of western cultural history, showing how entrenched aesthetic-theological assumptions have persistently defined European culture and its internal moral and political orientations.
Ruth HaCohen combines in her comprehensive analysis the perspectives of musicology, literary criticism, philosophy, psychology, and anthropology, tracing the tensions between Jewish "noise" and idealized Christian "harmony" and their artistic manifestations from the high Middle Ages through Nazi Germany and beyond. She concludes her book with a passionate and moving argument for humanizing contemporary soundspaces.
Publisher: Yale University Press
Number of pages: 532
Weight: 748 g
Dimensions: 235 x 156 x 28 mm
Ruth HaCohen's "Music Libel Against the Jews" is the winner of the 2012 Polonsky First Prize in the research category for creativity and originality in the humanistic disciplines. The Polonsky Prizes are given to faculty at The Hebrew University.--Polonsky Prize"Hebrew University" (06/07/2012)
Shortlisted for the 2012 Academy of Religion Book Awards in the Historical Study of Religion category.--Historical Study of Religion Award Shortlist"American Academy of Religion" (06/07/2012)
"This book is path-breaking in the construct of its subject, brilliant in its theoretical framework, and original in its insight and use of diverse avenues of historical inquiry--music history, the history of anti-Semitism, the history of Jewish thought, and the interrelationship between politics and culture."--Leon Botstein, President of Bard College--Leon Botstein, President of Bard College