New York, NY, USA: Routledge (2016)

Babette Babich
Fordham University
A book reading between k.d. lang's interpretation of Leonard Cohen's 'Hallelujah,' male and female desire, today's network culture, Adorno on radio and Nietzsche on the Greeks. The working of music is transformed by digital media, broadcast and recording dynamics. Given the sexual/religious core of Cohen's Hallelujah, this study poses a phenomenological reading of the objectification of both men and women, raising the question of desire, including gender issues and both homosexual and heterosexual desire. A review of critical thinking about musical performance as 'currency' and consumed commodity takes up Adorno's reading of Benjamin's analysis of the work of art in the age of mechanical reproduction as applied to music/radio/sound and the persistent role of 'recording consciousness'. Ultimately, the question of what Nietzsche called the becoming-human-of-dissonance is explored in terms of both ancient tragedy and Beethoven's striking deployment of dissonance as Nietzsche analyses both as playing with suffering, discontent, and pain itself, musically, as joy.
Keywords Musical covers, Leonard Cohen. Thedor Adorno, Friedrich Nietzsche, Greek Tragedy, Beethoven
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ISBN(s) 1138274135   1409449602   9781138274136
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