How did "voice" become a metaphor for selfhood in the Western imagination? The Lyric Myth of Voice situates the emergence of an ideological connection between voice and subjectivity in late eighteenth-century Italy, where long-standing political anxieties and new notions of cultural enlightenment collided in the mythical figure of the lyric poet-singer. Drawing on a range of approaches and frameworks from historical musicology to gender studies, disability studies, anthropology, and literary theory, Jessica Gabriel Peritz shows how this ancient yet modern myth of voice attained interpretable form, flesh, and sound. Ultimately, Peritz argues that music and literature together shaped the singing voice into a tool for civilizing modern Italian subjects.
The Lyric Myth of Voice Civilizing Song in Enlightenment Italy
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