Beethoven In the Image of Schubert

Joseph Kerman

in Returning Cycles

Published by University of California Press

Published in print March 2001 | ISBN: 9780520225640
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520925786 | DOI:
Beethoven In the Image of Schubert

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More than any of Schubert's other sonatas, the C-Minor Sonata is compared to Beethoven. Virtually every discussion of the sonata draws parallels between it and one or another—or, more often, several—of Beethoven's works. Less obvious than the similarities between Schubert's C-Minor Sonata and certain Beethoven works is the nature or import of this relationship. Both Godel and Walther Dürr regard Schubert's sonata as a kind of homage to Beethoven, who had died the preceding year. For Brendel, in contrast, Schubert's music evinces too indirect and complex a relationship to Beethoven's to accommodate the possibility of a simple homage. Andreas Krause attributes to Schubert a more deliberate, self-conscious aesthetic response to Beethoven, hearing the reflections of Beethoven in Schubert's last sonatas as marking stages in an explicitly emancipatory process. Hinrichsen, finally, suggests that through the functional transformation of the theme of a set of variations into the theme of a sonata, Schubert self-consciously establishes in his C-Minor Sonata an antipode to this, and by implication, any other, Beethovenian model.

Keywords: Schubert; sonatas; C-Minor Sonata; Beethoven

Chapter.  7472 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Musicology and Music History

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