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From its earliest appearance in the mid-1600s, the lyric theater form of zarzuela captivated Spanish audiences with its witty writing and lively musical scores. Clinton D. Young’s Music Theater and Popular Nationalism in Spain, 1880–1930 persuasively links zarzuela’s celebration of Spanish history and culture to the development of concepts of nationalism and national identity at the dawn of the twentieth century.

As a weak Spanish government focused its energy on preventing a recurrence of mid-nineteenth-century political upheavals, the project of articulating a national identity occurred at the popular level, particularly in cultural venues such as the theater. Zarzuela suited this aim well, depicting the lives of everyday citizens amid the rapidly changing norms brought about by industrialization and urbanization. It also integrated regional differences into a unified vision of Spanish national identity: a zarzuela performance set in Madrid could incorporate forms of music and folk dancing native to areas of the country as far distant as Andalucía and Catalonia. A true “music of the people” (música popular), zarzuela offered its audiences an image of what a more modern Spain might look like.

Zarzuela alone could not create a unified concept of Spanish identity, particularly with competition from new forms of mass culture and the rise of the Primo de Rivera dictatorship in the 1920s. Yet, as this riveting study shows, it made an indelible contribution to popular culture and nationalism. Young’s history brings to life the stories, songs, and evolving contexts of a uniquely Spanish art form.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
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  1. Half Title, Title Page, Copyright, Dedication, Quotation
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  1. Contents
  2. pp. ix-x
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  1. Acknowledgments
  2. pp. xi-xiv
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  1. Overture: Theater Music and the Problem of Spanish Nationalism
  2. pp. 1-20
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  1. 1. Theatrical and Political Revolutions in Nineteenth-Century Spain
  2. pp. 21-40
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  1. 2. Urban Life on the Spanish Musical Stage
  2. pp. 41-63
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  1. 3. Staging History, Staging National Identity
  2. pp. 64-82
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  1. 4. Regenerationism, Viennese Operetta, and Spanish Nationalism
  2. pp. 83-104
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  1. 5. The Romance of Rural Spain and the Failure of the Restoration Settlement
  2. pp. 105-124
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  1. 6. Zarzuela and the Operatic Tradition
  2. pp. 125-144
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  1. 7. Classicism and Historicism
  2. pp. 145-164
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  1. Finale: Popular Music and Popular Nationalism
  2. pp. 165-180
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  1. Appendix: Core Zarzuelas
  2. pp. 181-188
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  1. A Note on the Citation of Zarzuela Libretti
  2. pp. 189-190
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  1. Notes
  2. pp. 191-210
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  1. Bibliography
  2. pp. 211-228
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  1. Index
  2. pp. 229-237
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Additional Information

ISBN
9780807161043
MARC Record
OCLC
960977412
Pages
272
Launched on MUSE
2016-10-26
Open Access
No
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