Introduction to Avant-garde Art

Tagiru FUJII Professor

Department: Graduate School of Languages and Cultures

Class Time: 2015 Spring Tuesday
Recommended for: Graduate Students

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Course Overview

In this course, we focus on the homology between the key underlying structures of German/Austrian Contemporary Classical Music and mechanisms of capitalism’s economic systems and psychic apparatus of that time. By referring to theories such as Marx’s Value-Form theory and Freudian-Lacanian theory of desire and/or drive, we aim for a multidisciplinary reconsideration on the history of German/Austrian Contemporary Classical Music and opera as a mixed cultural phenomenon.

Key Features

As noted in the "Course Overview", the main theme of the course is (the history of) the German/Austrian Contemporary Classical Music as a cultural phenomenon. The classes mainly consist of lectures, but ideally, the theme of the class will freely develop itself depending on student responses to presented problems and topics. It is not rare that a splendid response from a student is capable of solving a highly complicated topic, and revealing the motif behind the topic. Moreover, students majoring in music are encouraged to explain the structure of harmony in the class using a piano. That kind of assistance will help students without musical talent to understand the development of tonality, and/or the importance of its breaking down process in the context of cultural history.

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Class Methodology and Schedule

Students need to consider the relation between capitalism and Contemporary Classical Music systems from the below perspectives.

  • Tonic and money
  • The relation between the form of value and tonal harmony
  • Tonality as object-cause of desire
  • Gould's admiration of Van Meegeren: Originality and fake

Preparations needed for each class will be announced in the previous class.


The articles to be discussed will be announced at the first meeting of the class.

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Page last updated May 24, 2016

The class contents were most recently updated on the date indicated. Please be aware that there may be some changes between the most recent year and the current page.

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