A stirring account of how the flowering of the European Enlightenment, two world wars, and the Holocaust can be remembered through the poignant works of music created in their wake. When it comes to how societies remember these increasingly distant dreams and catastrophes, we often think of history books, archives, documentaries, or memorials carved from stone. But in Time’s Echo, award-winning critic and cultural historian Jeremy Eichler makes a passionate and revelatory case for the power of music as culture’s memory, an art form uniquely capable of carrying forward meaning from the past. Eichler shows how four towering composers — Benjamin Britten, Arnold Schoenberg, Dmitri Shostakovich, Richard Strauss — lived through the era of the Second World War and the Holocaust and later transformed their experiences into deeply moving, transcendent works of music, scores that carry forward the echoes of lost time. Summoning the testimony of writers, poets, philosophers, novelists, musicians, and everyday citizens, Time’s Echo proposes a new way of listening to history and learning to hear in its music the hopes, dreams, and suffering of earlier generations. A lyrical narrative full of insight and compassion, this book deepens how we think about the legacies of war, the presence of the past, and the possibilities of art in our lives today.
Time’s Echo: The Second World War, the Holocaust, and the Music of Remembrance
- From the Publisher
September 1, 2021
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