Stephen Rumph

in Beethoven after Napoleon

Published by University of California Press

Published in print August 2004 | ISBN: 9780520238558
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520930124 | DOI:

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This chapter briefly sorts Beethoven's works chronologically, beginning in 1814 with the Congress of Vienna, which articulates the notorious dualism between late Beethoven and Rossini. 1809 is described as a crucial year for the confluence of political, economic, and musical events and shows an entirely new direction in Beethoven's political aesthetic. The traditional early, middle, and late periods are referred to as “the music up to the French invasion of Vienna (1809),” “Beethoven and early Romanticism,” and “the late works.” These three periods form the moments in a dialectic between Beethoven's earlier music and Romanticism, therefore defining the political history and sociology as a music cycle as 1809 is described as a year marked not only by biographical and stylistic changes, but also by fundamental shifts in the political and economic terrain. Finally, the chapter describes the period of Beethoven's romantic crisis, combining biography, economics, political history, and sociology.

Keywords: Beethoven; French invasion; Romanticism; late works; romantic crisis

Chapter.  6944 words. 

Subjects: Musicology and Music History

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