Front cover image for Music and the language of love : seventeenth-century French airs

Music and the language of love : seventeenth-century French airs

Simple songs or airs, in which a male poetic voice either seduces or excoriates a female object, were an influential vocal genre of the French Baroque era. In this comprehensive and interdisciplinary study, Catherine Gordon-Seifert analyzes the style of airs, which was based on rhetorical devices of lyric poetry, and explores the function and meaning of airs in French society, particularly the salons. She shows how airs deployed in both text and music an encoded language that was in sensuous contrast to polite society's cultivation of chaste love, strict gender roles, and restrained discourse. --Book Jacket
Print Book, English, ©2011
Indiana University Press, Bloomington, ©2011
Criticism, interpretation, etc
ix, 390 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm.
9780253354617, 0253354617
Music and texts: an overview of the sources: A general description of the air ; The publications ; The composers ; Publications by Lambert, Bacilly, La Barre, and Le Camus: a description ; The song texts ; Poetic structure ; Style or elocution: figurative language and poetic syntax ; Poetry and rhetoric
Rhetoric and meaning in the seventeenth-century French air: Seventeenth-century French sources on rhetoric and music ; Persuading the passions
Musical representations of the primary passions: The primary passions ; The agitated passions ; The modest passions ; The neutral passion: Le contentement ; Summary
Setting the texts: Painful love ; Bittersweet love ; Enticing love ; Joyous love ; Summary
Form and style: the organization and function of expressions, syntax, and rhetorical figures: Form (disposition) ; The organization of expressions in short airs ; The organization of expressions in long airs ; Form in single-strophe airs ; The rhetorical sections of a piece: their function and expression ; Style (elocution): poetic structure, punctuation, and rhetorical figures
L'art du chant: performing French airs: À haute voix: the importance of orality ; The art of proper singing: tone and style ; Ornamentation ; The pronunciation of seventeenth-century French ; Syllabic quantity ; Tempo ; Le mouvement ; Repeats ; Basso continuo accompaniment
Salon culture and the mid-seventeenth-century French air: The French air and conversation ; Musical seductions ; Galanterie and the air: undercurrents of eroticism and lessons of morality ; Women singing airs as men
The late-seventeenth-century air and the rhetoric of distraction ; The air after 1670 ; Songs and the rhetoric of distraction ; Pleasure, airs, and the new rhetoric ; The legacy of Lambert, Bacilly, Le Camus, and La Barre