On Late Style by Edward W. Said
Music and Literature Against the Grain

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Synopsis

In this fascinating book, Edward Said looks at the creative contradictions that often mark the late works of literary and musical artists. Said shows how the approaching death of an artist can make its way into his work, examining essays, poems, novels, films, and operas by such artists as Beethoven, Genet, Mozart, Lampedusa, Euripides, Cavafy, and Mann, among others. He uncovers the conflicts and complexity that often distinguish artistic lateness, resulting in works that stood in direct contrast to what was popular at the time and were forerunners of what was to come in each artist's discipline–works of true genius. Eloquent and impassioned, brilliantly reasoned and revelatory, On Late Style is Edward Said's own great last work.


From the Trade Paperback edition.
 

About Edward W. Said

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Edward W. Said (1935-2003) was University Professor of English and Comparative Literature at Columbia University. He was the music critic for the "Nation" and is the author of numerous books, including "Music at the Limits," "Musical Elaborations," "Beginnings: Intention and Method," and "Humanism and Democratic Criticism.
 
Published December 10, 2008 by Vintage. 208 pages
Genres: Arts & Photography, Literature & Fiction, Education & Reference. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for On Late Style

The New York Times

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Readers’ Opinions Forum: Book News and Reviews But read one of the essays Said praises — Genet's account of the killings of Palestinians in the Sabra and Shatila refugee camps in Lebanon in 1982 — and one sees not a titanic visionary in "late style" but an aging romantic straining for urg...

Jul 16 2006 | Read Full Review of On Late Style: Music and Lite...

The New York Times

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What artist does not yearn, some day, to possess a "late style"?

Jul 16 2006 | Read Full Review of On Late Style: Music and Lite...

The Guardian

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For while there are late works that radiate - and may even generate - calm acceptance of the passage of time (such as The Tempest), there are plenty of works that could be said to belong to culture's awkward squad, and it's these that Said is particularly concerned with.

May 26 2007 | Read Full Review of On Late Style: Music and Lite...

Publishers Weekly

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in another, he compares Thomas Mann's Death in Venice (1911) with Benjamin Britten's 1973 opera of Mann's novella, composed near the end of Britten's career.

Jan 30 2006 | Read Full Review of On Late Style: Music and Lite...

London Review of Books

And when Said/Adorno speaks of ‘the episodic character of Beethoven’s late work, its apparent carelessness about its own continuity’, as a ‘fractured landscape … devoid of sweetness, bitter’, ‘irresolute and fragmentary’, what can this be said to mean, set beside the rigour of the argument Beetho...

| Read Full Review of On Late Style: Music and Lite...

London Review of Books

And when Said/Adorno speaks of ‘the episodic character of Beethoven’s late work, its apparent carelessness about its own continuity’, as a ‘fractured landscape … devoid of sweetness, bitter’, ‘irresolute and fragmentary’, what can this be said to mean, set beside the rigour of the argument Beetho...

| Read Full Review of On Late Style: Music and Lite...

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