[Marxism] In Search of Beethoven

Colin West colingwest at mac.com
Wed Sep 23 16:04:26 MDT 2009


On Sep 23, 2009, at 4:46 PM, Shane Mage wrote:

>
> As for Don Giovanni, it is perfectly true that it is an "anti-
> authoritarian masterpiece,"  but in exactly the opposite sense from
> that meant by the liberal critics.  To grasp that fact for yourself
> consider only these two (of many) things: (1) the closeness,
> especially in Mozart's day, of the cognates "liberty" and "libertine,"
> and (2) having (seemingly) been killed early one morning, by evening
> of that same day the Commendatore is (seemingly) buried in a graveyard
> with a massive equestrian statue over his tomb.
>
> Shane Mage

I have to disagree here. Of Mozart's great operas Don Giovanni is, to  
me, the lesser. It relies on the stale "deus ex machina" to move the  
plot and Giovanni himself, although reputedly something of a roué,  
entirely fails to seduce anyone in the entire opera. All in all I much  
prefer "Figaro" followed by "Cosi" (which I don't feel is anti-female  
as some might believe; the men are made to look fools) and then  
"Giovanni".

Further, 'liberty' and 'libertine' may be cognates but only in  
English. In German it would have been 'Freiheit' and (I think)  
'Wüstling' so I don't see how that works.

Colin


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