Cover

pdf iconDownload PDF
 

Title Page, Other Works in the Series, Copyright, Epigraph

pdf iconDownload PDF
 

Contents

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. vii-viii

Acknowledgments

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. ix-x

read more

Introduction

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 2-15

Benjamin's characterization of the storyteller as a mediator between past and present, between life and death, and as a figure who cannot be securely located in any single condition, will serve to introduce my discussion of Offenbach’s Les Contes d’Hoffmann, which may be interpreted on more than one level as a death-utterance. ...

read more

Chapter One: Telling the Tales

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 16-40

The nineteenth-century librettist, at least before the advent of Literaturoper, was not expected to treat literary sources with any particular reverence, and among librettists Jules Barbier and Michel Carré have an unusually poor reputation in this regard. Indeed, history has generally condemned these busy men of the theater as insensitive to or unconcerned with literary values ...

read more

Chapter Two: Mesmerizing Voices:Music, Medicine, and the Invention of Dr. Miracle

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 41-65

When the fantastical drama Les Contes d’Hoffmann opened at the Théâtre de l’Odéon in March 1851, contemporary commentators did not remark on the number of liberties that playwrights Jules Barbier and Michel Carré had taken with E.T.A. Hoffmann’s original stories. Indeed, in introducing Barbier and Carré’s adaptation to his readers, ...

read more

Chapter Three: Song as Symptom: Antonia, Olympia, and the Prima Donna Mother

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 66-84

That the hysteric has proved a useful rhetorical figure for feminist discussions of opera and Western art music as a whole is evident in Catherine Clément’s references to heroines and singers alike as “girls who jump into space” and “hysteric[s] in [their] midnight hour,” and in Susan McClary’s invocation of various “madwomen” ...

read more

Chapter Four: Offenbach, for Posterity

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 85-111

Every critic who reported on Les Contes d’Hoffmann’s 1881 premiere agreed that it represented not only a departure from Offenbach’s characteristic style, but a conscious bid for artistic success and lasting esteem. Auguste Vitu of Le Figaro described it as “the dear, treasured work, Offenbach’s supreme hope; ...

read more

Chapter Five: Reflections on the Venetian Act

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 112-133

As long as human beings have represented abstractions as allegorical figures, Music has been a woman. The conceit is as old as the muses, Calliope and Polyhymnia; as old as Monteverdi’s La Musica descending from Parnassus to tell the story of Orfeo and his lyre. Prior to poets, prior to song, there is music, and music is a woman. ...

Notes

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 134-147

Bibliography

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 148-159

Index

pdf iconDownload PDF

pp. 160-164