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Thread: Richard Wagner

  1. #496
    Senior Member annaw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DavidA View Post
    I think there are two things to be said against that, one is Tolkien’s own denial and the second that he never published antisemitic tracts such as ‘The Jews in Literature’
    Okay, I get the first point but what’s up with the second one? Not everyone who has got inspiration from Wagner are antisemits. (Could we somehow ban the use of that word in Wagner threads ?)

    EDIT: Sorry, DavidA, I totally misread! Apparently Tolkien was a Wagner fan if I recall correctly. It has been said that he might have got inspiration from Wagner but he denied that as well. I somehow thought we are talking about that. My bad!
    Last edited by annaw; Jun-29-2020 at 14:16.

  2. #497
    Senior Member JAS's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by annaw View Post
    Okay, I get the first point but what’s up with the second one? Not everyone who has got inspiration from Wagner are antisemits. (Could we somehow ban the use of that word in Wagner threads ?)
    And have such threads run for only two or three posts?
    Last edited by JAS; Jun-29-2020 at 13:34.

  3. #498
    Senior Member annaw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JAS View Post
    And have such threads run for only two or three posts?
    I’m tempted to say that yes, indeed, it would be better if the only other way was to discuss him only through his antisemitic views. Luckily there are exceptions as well.

  4. #499
    Senior Member DavidA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by annaw View Post
    Okay, I get the first point but what’s up with the second one? Not everyone who has got inspiration from Wagner are antisemits. (Could we somehow ban the use of that word in Wagner threads ?)

    EDIT: Sorry, DavidA, I totally misread! Apparently Tolkien was a Wagner fan if I recall correctly. It has been said that he might have got inspiration from Wagner but he denied that as well. I somehow thought we are talking about that. My bad!
    Tolkien refused to admit that his ring had anything to do with Wagner’s. “Both rings were round, and there the resemblance ceased,” he said. But he certainly knew his Wagner, and made an informal study of “Die Walküre” not long before writing the novels. It’s quite obvious that his book was influenced by Wagner but as Wagner’s operas were not exactly original, so what?
    Tolkien’s friend, C S Lewis was also a great fan of Wagner
    Last edited by DavidA; Jun-29-2020 at 14:34.

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  6. #500
    Senior Member annaw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DavidA View Post
    Tolkien refused to admit that his ring had anything to do with Wagner’s. “Both rings were round, and there the resemblance ceased,” he said. But he certainly knew his Wagner, and made an informal study of “Die Walküre” not long before writing the novels. It’s quite obvious that his book was influenced by Wagner but as Wagner’s operas were not exactly original, so what?
    Tolkien’s friend, C S Lewis was also a great fan of Wagner
    Yup, that’s what I initially thought we were talking about .

  7. #501
    Senior Member Zhdanov's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JAS View Post
    art must elevate itself above its source material.
    yes, but it is the administrators handling the 'source material' that work to elevate art above all.

    Quote Originally Posted by JAS View Post
    It needs such material to be created, but it crumbles if it is merely about those sources.
    Der Ring Des Nibelungen, for one, is no crumbling, although being very direct on the matter.

  8. #502
    Senior Member annaw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by millionrainbows View Post
    That's the kind of "one-directional" thinking that always loses me. If A=B, then B=A. The reason the 'specifics' are under debate is not because a specific reference is not possible, but because there are so many possibilities that a specific reference is difficult to "prove."

    Archetypes are universal out of convenience, but they always are manifest in people as specific traits. A "villain" or "hero" could be anybody, but that does not separate the archetype from being a reference to specific traits in specific people.
    In being specific, let's not dwell on the impossibility of correspondence to real people, but rather the possibilities this opens up.
    Sure we cannot exclude the interpretation which Zhdanov is arguing for but I see it just as much more unlikely compared to many other interpretations which could be used instead.

  9. #503
    Senior Member annaw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zhdanov View Post
    yes, but it is the administrators handling the 'source material' that work to elevate art above all.
    What do you mean by this? I think it was mainly Wagner who handled the source material.

    Der Ring Des Nibelungen, for one, is no crumbling, although being very direct on the matter.
    This strikes me as word against word sort of argument. I don't think it's even possible to present only a specific real life event through art because artist cannot avoid putting his own thoughts and life into it.
    Last edited by annaw; Jun-29-2020 at 17:39.

  10. #504
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    Quote Originally Posted by annaw View Post
    I haven't yet read an opera libretto that in its complexity and philosophically complex ideas would come near to Wagner's.
    Tippett's libretti spring to mind, but they're not in the same league. Can't fault him for ambition, however.

  11. #505
    Senior Member DavidA's Avatar
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    'I haven't yet read an opera libretto that in its complexity and philosophically complex ideas would come near to Wagner's.'

    Funny I was only just listening to a philosopher saying that we shouldn't mistake complexity for profundity. He said profundity usually exists in simpicity. We are fooled by complexity.

  12. #506
    Senior Member annaw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DavidA View Post
    'I haven't yet read an opera libretto that in its complexity and philosophically complex ideas would come near to Wagner's.'

    Funny I was only just listening to a philosopher saying that we shouldn't mistake complexity for profundity. He said profundity usually exists in simpicity. We are fooled by complexity.
    Those are not excluding each other though. I wouldn't claim that Kant's Critiques are simple and thus profound, they are mad complex and yet profound, of course depending how we define those terms.

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