Cover

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TItle Page, Copyright

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Contents

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Preface

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pp. vii-xi

This study discusses works that I have lived with and enjoyed for years. It is meant to establish the importance of the American symphonists active in the years extending from the mid-thirties to the end of the forties. It holds that they have contributed some of the most vital artistic works of the twentieth century to the world’s culture. Indeed, several respected...

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1. PRELIMINARIES

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pp. 1-30

The decade and a half starting around 1935 holds major significance in America’s cultural history. Most composers, artists, and intellectuals would agree with Arthur Schlesinger Jr. when he writes, “The Great Depression and the Second World War showed the desperate necessity of national cohesion within the framework of shared national...

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2. SYMPHONIES OF THE MID- TO LATE THIRTIES

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pp. 31-82

The year 1935 found the United States in the midst of social and economic crisis. The nation was threatening to come apart. Swift action was needed. Newly elected president Franklin Delano Roosevelt and his federal administration immediately launched a wholesale attack on the country’s problems, seeing them as involving not just jobs but also lifestyles. He...

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3. SYMPHONIES OF THE WAR YEARS

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pp. 83-146

It is important to keep in mind a few details of the war years, since they formed a background of critical importance to the creative activities of American composers, regardless of whether the composers acknowledged their influence. The United States plunged into war when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor on 7 December 1941. In early 1942, Japanese...

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4. SYMPHONIES OF THE IMMEDIATE POSTWAR YEARS

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pp. 147-199

The twentieth century furthered a global insanity that manifested itself especially in two world wars. At last, the Second World War was over. After living through the mayhem that had gone on for several years, the world was relieved by the end of hostilities. The euphoria over World War II’s conclusion strongly affected the United States in...

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5. AMERICAN SYMPHONIES AFTER 1950

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pp. 200-213

Most composers of the thirties and forties had incorporated generally enjoyable, communicative, and intelligible combinations of melody, harmony, and rhythm into their symphonies. They had given a clear overall organization to each movement. Within each movement, the relationship between beginning, middle, and end was meant to be unambiguous. The ...

Notes

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pp. 215-225

Selected Bibliography

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pp. 227-231

Index

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pp. 233-237