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CRUZ, Bianchi Cinelli G.


MF, 4-5PM

A Collection of literature about Twentieth Century Music

This is an essay about my chosen literature that sums up and describes the history of music in
the 20th century. Included are articles that were written in the midst of the 20th century that give
observations and questions on the things around them that concerns music.

The first is an article by J. Lawrence ERB entitled, Music in the Education of the Common
Man from The Musical Quarterly, Vol. 5, No. 3 (Jul., 1919), pp. 308-315

This article focuses on the place of Music in the education of the people of America at the time.
It concerned the Puritan forefathers of America prohibiting the people to be musicians by trade
and frowning upon music in general and only being accepting on psalm tunes on the Colony of
Massachusetts Bay. It describes the change in the 18th and 19th century where music and its
place on education were no longer questioned.

After explaining these, the author goes on the questions on the basis upon which it shall enter
and the place it shall occupy on education. How and why it should be funded by the government
is also brought thought upon. One of the rhetoric that the author wanted to say was that
American education should have a more diverse set of courses to develop all senses and to
open efficiently all the avenues to the brain. I think this is relevant to the topic at hand because
it pertains to the education of the masses about music, it can show how possibly the people at
the time knew about Music.

The second is an article by Edward J. Dent entitled Music in University Education from The
Musical Quarterly, Vol. 3, No. 4 (Oct., 1917), pp. 605-619

This one observes the differences of English institutions on music with other countries at the
time, with Germany as an example. The author says that research in Music Theory and History
is done in German universities but the dissertations in which it is embodied are rewarded with
the doctorate in philosophy, not in music as a separate faculty as opposed to English
Universities. Technical studies such as harmony, counterpoint, orchestration, and composition
are regarded by Germans as belonging to the Conservatoire rather than to that of the

The article continues to explain and criticise the English Universities when it comes to musical
degrees. Further into the article, the author then says that conservatoires in general train
performers with a view to earn a living by playing an instrument or singing. In universities, it is
said that music is studied for its own sake and not primarily as a means of earning a livelihood.
At the last paragraph it is concluded that the musical ability of a nation is not to be judged by the
number of great composers it has made in the past, nor by the number of musicians in the
present day, but by the general standard of musical appreciation shown throughout the country.
The relevance of this article is similar to J. Lawrences article, but this one shows more regard to
higher levels of study.

The third article is by Karl H. Eschman entitled The Rhetoric of Modern Music from The
Musical Quarterly, Vol. 7, No. 2 (Apr., 1921), pp. 157-166

The author criticizes Modern music, and suggests that music has form and Modern music is not
excluded from that. He states that some people, when told of the word form, will automatically
think about the formal and arbitrary arrangements of the classical period. He states that
Contemporary composers (of the 20th century) cover the message or avoids making one by only
focusing on the magic legerdemain instead of focusing on the real message, as he insists in
the whole article that music should possess. He compares music of the Classical period to
poetry and prose. However the author makes it clear that music does not necessarily have to
possess regularity to have a form.

I think this is highly relevant to the study of 20th century music because this is an example of
the more Conservative critics of the music of the time. Having criticisms from people of diverse
ideological backgrounds will make it more unbiased and more credible than only taking sources
made by the same kind of people.

The fourth article is by Rudhyar D. Chenneviere entitled,The Two Trends of Modern Music
Straviskys works from The Musical Quarterly, Vol. 5, No. 2 (Apr., 1919), pp. 169-174
The translated work of the author showcases the two trends, continuous and broken or
discontinued music. Continuous music was described to be akin to nature, the wind, the
ocean, etc. Chants by Eskimo priests were considered as such because it tries to imitate the
sounds of animals to lure their souls.

Other cultures are also prime examples, as shown in the article, Hindoo (Hindu?) and Oriental
music are considered by the author continuous music as opposed to scientific classical music
that is comprised of scales and other figures created by man. According to the author, broken
or discontinued music triumphs in counterpoint and scientific classic music until Beethoven
who is the first, in his "infinite melodies," to aspire to genuine continuity, to Wagner and
Debussy, until Stravinsky, with his polytonal Sacre du Printemps (The Rite of Spring) as an
example. He describes these contradictory tonalities to create an illusion of a perpetual and
unbroken generation of sound. Schoenberg opposes this trend and composes broken or
discontinued music.

The author describes that Schoenberg is bound by the scalar principles that man made and is
creating sounds unknown, mysterious cries. He said that Schoenberg makes the impression of
someone stuttering in a language which he himself hardly knows and is in the process of still
discovering it. I think this is relevant as to what the critics think of both Schoenberg and
Stravinsky in their early ages. Note that Stravinsky actually started to use Schoenbergs twelve-
tone technique in the 1950s, approximately 31 years after this article has been published. This
author tended to be more philosophical compared to others at the time, probably because both
Stravinsky and Schoenbergs works were not fully understood or developed by the time of
publishing of the article.
The Fifth article is by G. Edward Stubbs entitled Secularization of Sacred Music.from The
Musical Quarterly, Vol. 2, No. 4 (Oct., 1916), pp. 615-627
On the Motu Proprio from the Vatican is an Instruction on Sacred Music. The author points out
the instructions that Motu Proprio explains and praises it and the Roman Catholic Church on
discerning the pure and impure music to know what is appropriate and what is not in the
Liturgy. Not only are the appropriate music mentioned such as Gregorian chant and classic
polyphony but also the appropriate ways of singing and playing aforementioned music.

It is mentioned the place of music in the liturgy where it is only a handmaid and guide and not
the main focus of the Liturgy. The use of Modern music is also allowed, but with strict inspection
to have a consistency of music without profane contents such as contents of the theatre. The
author praises the Roman Catholic Churchs attempt to have a consistent and proper music
within its Liturgical celebrations. He then compares it to other Christian churches such as the
Protestants, which on the other hand, does not have a similar Instruction on the proper Sacred
Music that is played on the Church. He then explains the advantages of having such instruction.
It is made clear the distinction between secular and sacred music. The author even said: In-
deed, if we were to change its name and call it "A Compendium of the Laws of Consistency in
all Church Music" the title would be strictly appropriate.

I think this is relevant to the topic of 20th century music because it does not only cover the music
that the majority of the western world hears and sings every Sunday, but also shows the
evolution of Sacred music half a century before another instruction on Sacred music is
published from Vatican. It is by this that there can be distinction on secular and sacred music.
The inclusion of picked Modern compositions is also important to the history of 20th century