Analytical Essays on Music by Women Composers: Concert Music from 1960-2000
Over the past 30 years, musicologists have produced a remarkable new body of research literature focusing on the lives and careers of women composers in their socio-historical contexts. But detailed analysis and discussion of the works created by these composers are still extremely rare. This is particularly true in the domain of music theory, where scholarly work continues to focus almost exclusively on male composers. Moreover, while the number of performances, broadcasts, and recordings of women's compositions has unquestionably grown, they remain significantly underrepresented in comparison to music by male composers. Addressing these deficits is not simply a matter of rectifying a scholarly gender imbalance: the lack of knowledge surrounding the music of women composers means that scholars, performers, and the general public remain unfamiliar with a large body of exciting repertoire. Analytical Essays on Music by Women Composers: Concert Music from 1960-2000 is the first to appear in an exciting a four volume series devoted to the work of women composers across Western art music history.
Each chapter, many by leading music theorists, opens with a brief biographical sketch of the composer before presenting an in-depth critical-analytic exploration of a single representative composition, linking analytical observations with questions of meaning and sociohistorical context. Chapters are grouped thematically by analytical approach into three sections, each of which places the analytical methods used in the essays that follow into the context of late twentieth-century ideas and trends. Featuring rich analyses and detailed study by the most reputed music theorists in the field, along with brief biographical sketches for each composer, this collection brings to the fore the essential repertoire of a range of important composers, many of whom otherwise stand outside the standard canon.