• Leonard Bernstein's The Age of Anxiety: A Great American Symphony during McCarthyism

    Author(s):
    Philip Gentry (see profile)
    Date:
    2011
    Subject(s):
    Musicology
    Item Type:
    Article
    Tag(s):
    American music, McCarthyism, Symphonies
    Permanent URL:
    http://dx.doi.org/10.17613/M6X23B
    Abstract:
    Leonard Bernstein’s 1949 second symphony, subtitled "The Age of Anxiety," is an exploration of post-war apathy and exhaustion at the dawn of McCarthyism. Examining the work both in its political context and also within the context of Bernstein’s beloved American symphonic tradition, I show how Bernstein flipped the triumphal musical rhetoric of the “Koussevitzky manner” on its head to bid farewell to the modernist and Popular Front traditions that had previously nurtured him.
    Metadata:
    Published as:
    Journal article    
    Status:
    Published
    Last Updated:
    5 years ago
    License:
    All Rights Reserved
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