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269 INTRODUCTION 1. Virginia Woolf, “Mr. Bennett and Mrs. Brown,” in Collected Essays, ed. Leonard Woolf, 4 vols. (London: Hogarth, 1966), 1:319, available online at /temp/Woolf_bb.pdf (accessed 6 December 2011). The relevant passage reads in whole: “ . . . On or about December, 1910, human character changed. I am not saying that one went out, as one might into a garden, and there saw that a rose had flowered, or that a hen had laid an egg. The change was not sudden and definite like that. But a change there was, nevertheless; and, since one must be arbitrary, let us date it about the year 1910.” 2. Ibid., 332–33. 3. Luigi Russolo, The Art of Noises, Monographs in Musicology no. 6, trans. Barclay Brown (New York: Pendragon, 1986), 26–27, quoting Marinetti. Russolo charted among his “6 families of noises” to be realized mechanically in his would-be futurist orchestra the “Voices of animals and people,” incorporating solely the sounds of distress and suffering : “Shouts, Screams, Shrieks, Wails, Hoots, Howls, Death rattles, Sobs” (28). Yet even in Russolo’s neo-fascist rant there lies a not-quite-silent oppositional and utopian prospect , to the extent that the sounds he evokes are not only properly associated with suffering and abjection but also at heart pleas for life, against all odds. Marinetti published his poetic account of the experience in Zang Tumb Tumb (1914), employing onomatopeias and a variety of different typefaces, from small to very large, in an effort to represent as graphically as possible the sounds of war. The letter passage quoted reflects his so-named “words-in-freedom” style. He celebrated the outbreak of NOTES 270 • N O T E S T O P A G E S 2 – 7 the First World War and in 1915 produced a volume of poems called Guerra sola igiene del mundo (War the Only Hygiene of the World). Later, Marinetti became an active supporter of Mussolini. See further Cinzia Sartini Blum, The Other Modernism: F.T. Marinetti ’s Futurist Fiction of Power (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1996). 4. Woolf, “Mr. Bennett and Mrs. Brown,” 334 and 336, respectively. 5. Jean-Jacques Rousseau, The First and Second Discourses, ed. Roger D. Masters, trans. Roger D. Masters and Judith R. Masters (New York: St. Martin’s Press, 1964), 47, emphasis added. 6. Ibid., 95. 7. Ibid., 95–96. 8. Ibid., 168. 9. See the insightful essay by Berthold Hoeckner, “Wagner and the Origin of Evil,” Opera Quarterly 23, nos. 2–3 (2008): 151–83, considering Wagner’s conception of the Ring cycle as well as post-Holocaust assessments of Wagner as the origin of evil for the Third Reich. 10. See Warren Darcy, “Creatio ex nihilo: The Genesis, Structure, and Meaning of the Rheingold Prelude,” Nineteenth Century Music 13, no. 2 (1989): 80–91, incorporating and engaging research by John Deathridge. 11. Richard Wagner, My Life, 2 vols. (New York: Dodd, Mead, 1911), 2:603. 12. Ibid., 611. 13. Charles Ives employed the same technique, and for the same apparent purpose, in the string-ensemble opening of The Unanswered Question (1908/revised 1930–35). 14. Darcy, “Creatio ex nihilo,” 93. See especially 92–98 for Darcy’s detailed discussion of the structure and meaning of the Prelude, from which some of my account is derived. 15. Adorno recognized precisely this feature in Wagner’s music generally—though arguably the “tendency” is particularly pronounced in the telling opening to the Ring cycle; for example, Philosophy of New Music, ed. and trans. Robert Hullot-Kentor (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2006), 190: “In no passage [in Wagner’s music] does sound go beyond itself temporally; instead it is dissipated in space.” Michel Foucault’s discussion appears in The Order of Things: An Archaeology of the Human Senses (New York: Vintage, 1966), 307–11. 16. Arthur Schopenhauer, The World as Will and Representation (1818; 3rd and final ed., 1859), trans. Richard E. Aquila in collaboration with David Carus, 2 vols. (New York: Pearson Longman, 2008–10), 1:308–10, original emphasis. 17. Ibid., 313. 18. Ibid., 308, original emphasis. Schopenhauer continues: “Just for this reason, the effect of music is so very much more powerful and penetrating than that of the other arts. For the latter speak only of shadows; it, rather, speaks of the essence of things.” 19. Ibid., 315. 20. The Rheingold Prelude appears at two other key moments in the film; see the discussion by Robert Sinnerbrink...


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