Richard Wagner and the Anti-Semitic Imagination

Synopsis

"This book addresses one of the most hotly contested debates in contemporary cultural life: the question of how anti-Semitism figures in the operas of Richard Wagner. Until now, scholars have generally acknowledged Wagner's anti-Semitism but have argued that it is irrelevant to the operas themselves. Marc A. Weiner challenges that traditional view by asserting that anti-Semitism is a crucial, pervasive feature in Wagner's operas. Weiner argues that the operas exemplify and contribute to a vast collection of images that are patently anti-Semitic - and that were readily recognized as such by nineteenth-century German audiences. These images were associated particularly with the body. Through a careful examination of Wagner's music, libretti, and stage directions, Weiner reconstructs iconographies of corporeal images - iconographies of the eye, voice, smell, gait, and sexuality - that were essential to the operas and were "associated with anti-Semitism and the longing for an imagined German community.""--BOOK JACKET. Title Summary field provided by Blackwell North America, Inc. All Rights Reserved

Additional information

Contributors:
Publisher: Place of publication:
  • Lincoln, NE
Publication year:
  • 1995