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The Humanistic Philosophy of Music

In this revised version of his ground-breaking study, Professor Lippman looks at the vanishing world of humanism with compassion and concision. When it was originally published, it was the first book on musical aesthetics to examine music from the standpoint of society and culture. The traditional problems of the field were viewed in a new perspective that brought their solution clearly into view. Since that time, the field has exploded with investigations of many aspects of the subject, with varying degrees of distinction. Professor Lippman's revision is distinguished by the clarity of his language and the relevance of his analyses. In this study, the author's expertise in social science gives him an appropriately broad frame of reference for his illuminating discussions of the material, form, meaning, style, permanence, composites, context and conception of music. In sorting out the interacting factors of musical construction and perception, his emphasis is humanistic, subordinating the physical and biological determinants of music to the inherent constructive powers of perception and to the creative forces of society, culture and history. He does not focus on empirical objects, such as a musical score or a phonograph record, or on the behavior of laboratory subjects, but proceeds phenomenologically, examining the nature of the objects of musical awareness as they are given in consciousness itself. In so doing, Lippman expands the scope of musical philosophy by means of the broader cultural comprehension of music developed in recent years and offers a new conception of its concerns and problems. For philosophers, aestheticians and musicians, this book will provide a banquet for thought and controversy for years to come.
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