Course date

7 July - 18 July, 2003
Application deadline:
15 February, 2003
Course Director(s): 

Judit Frigyesi

Bar-Ilan University, Department of Music, Ramat-Gan, Israel
Course Faculty: 

Michael Beckerman

New York University, Arts and Science, Music, New York, United States of America

Walter Feldman

Jewish Music Research Center, Jerusalem, Israel

Ruth HaCohen (Princzower)

Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Musicology, Jerusalem, Israel

Jaroslav Mihule

Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic

The purpose of this course is threefold. First, it explores the potential of music to articulate personal and group responses to problems of society. Second, it will articulate some of the special problems of the twentieth century as they manifest in music. Third, it will place the musical culture of Eastern Europe within the European cultural milieu by showing the ways in which it reflected both the common anxieties of European art and the particular problems of the region.

Two units of the course will present general problems of music, the first one dealing with nationalism and the second one with the tension between individual and communal expression/demands. The remaining three units will discuss these and other problems in their relation to three countries: the Czech Republic, Turkey and Hungary. In the course of the twentieth century, these countries went through a series of changing self definitions, which in the case of Hungary and Turkey involved also the transition from an imperial statehood-identity to a definition of nation that was based on (real or imagined) ethnic unity. In the case of all of these countries the relation with "Europe" (as an imaginary cultural entity) played a major role. All these issues influenced and were played out in the domain of culture. They manifested themselves in the policy making of music as a social activity as well as in the personal responses of composers and public regarding musical style.