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Music Robert Schumann
by
Laura Tunbridge

Introduction

The compositions and critical writings of Robert Schumann (b. 1810–d. 1856) brought together musical and literary German Romanticism. Although now best known for his songs and piano music Schumann also wrote symphonies, concertos, chamber music, oratorios, melodrama, and opera. Interpretations of his works are often informed by his biography, especially his relationships with other musicians (e.g., his wife Clara and Johannes Brahms) and his medical history. Debate continues over possible diagnoses of his final illness and the impact of his health on his creative life. Emerging archival research, reception studies, and new editions of his music and writings are changing the face of Schumann studies. A more complex picture of the composer’s standing in his time and since is encouraging reassessment of his achievements, particularly works from his later years. Inevitably there is a great deal of German-language scholarship on Schumann, a selection of which is included here.

General Overviews

There are many overviews of Schumann’s life and works, many of which are overtly romanticized. The versions included here are among the most recent (excepting Dahlhaus 1991, still one of the best overviews), and valuable for their comprehensive coverage and critical stances toward received ideas. Daverio 1997 and Geck 2010 provide new perspectives on the various stages of Schumann’s career. Loos 2005 introduces each work individually. Tadday 2006 and Perrey 2007, in German and English respectively, deal with Schumann’s music by genre and consider key issues such as the composer’s 20th-century reception. Tibbetts 2010 collates interviews to illustrate recent attitudes among scholars and performers.

  • Dahlhaus, Carl. Nineteenth-Century Music. Translated by J. Bradford Robinson. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1991.

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    This magisterial overview of 19th-century music history provides background on Schumann and his contemporaries as well as trenchant observations on particular works and aesthetic concerns. Originally published as Die Musik des 19. Jahrhunderts. Laaber, Germany: Laaber Verlag, 1980.

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  • Daverio, John. Robert Schumann: Herald of a “New Poetic Age.” New York: Oxford University Press, 1997.

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    This has become the standard life and works in English. It provides an engaging account of Schumann’s biography and also introduces key issues surrounding the interpretation of his works. In particular, Daverio promotes Schumann as a “literary composer.” The book also emphasises the achievements of Schumann’s later career.

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  • Geck, Martin. Robert Schumann: Mensch und Musiker der Romantik. Munich: Siedler Verlag, 2010.

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    The most recent German-language life and works that intersperses the biography with “Intermezzi” on broader issues such as Schumann’s literary interests and politics.

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  • Loos, Helmut, ed. Robert Schumann. Interpretations seiner Werke. 2 vols. Laaber, Germany: Laaber Verlag, 2005.

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    A multiauthor German-language collection, which provides brief introductions to every Schumann opus and a good, mostly German-language, bibliography.

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  • Perrey, Beate, ed. The Cambridge Companion to Schumann. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 2007.

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    A multiauthor English-language collection, which considers Schumann’s music by genre as well as providing chapters on his biography and reception. Ideal for undergraduates.

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  • Tadday, Ulrich, ed. Schumann Handbuch. Kassel, Germany: Bärenreiter, 2006.

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    A multiauthor German language collection of essays that includes a consideration of recent tendencies in Schumann scholarship, sections on the composer’s aesthetics, overviews of his work in different genres, and his reception. Recommended for its snapshots of key works and issues.

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  • Tibbetts, John C. Schumann: A Chorus of Voices. New York: Amadeus, 2010.

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    Tibbetts has spent years gathering interviews by performers and scholars of Schumann’s music, which have been presented partly as a fifteen-part radio documentary (see The World of Robert Schumann) and, in expanded form, in this book. Both provide an overview of Schumann’s career and some insight into how he is perceived today.

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Reference Works

Daverio and Sams and Edler 2006 are encyclopedia entries with extensive bibliographies and work lists; the Schumann Portal provides links to many relevant websites.

  • Daverio, John, and Eric Sams. “Robert Schumann.” In Grove Music Online.

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    This online music encyclopedia entry is a good starting point for research. It provides a clearly written introduction to Schumann’s life and musical developments, divided into chronological periods. There is a comprehensive list of works and an extensive bibliography particularly good for older sources.

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  • Edler, Arnfried, et al. “Schumann. 1. Robert.” In Die Musik in Geschichte und Gegenwart. Edited by Friedrich Blume and Ludwig Finscher. Personenteil 8. Kassel, Germany: Bärenreiter, 2006.

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    The standard German-language music encyclopedia. It provides a clear introduction to the life and a good bibliography and work list.

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  • Schumann Portal.

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    A helpful German website for keeping up with Schumann studies. There are posts about new publications, recordings, dissertations, events, the Neue Ausgabe and Briefedition, and bibliographies. There are also links to other useful Schumann sites and institutions. It is maintained by Dr. Ingrid Bodsch of Bonn Stadtmuseum.

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Guides to Repertory and Literature

Schumann is not particularly well served for up-to-date bibliographies; Hofmann 1979 and Munte 1972 are both dated but still useful. There are more guides to the repertory, from sketches to the new complete edition (Robert Schumann Neue Ausgabe sämtlicher Werke), to commentary on his dedications (Seibold 2008). Schumann made his own work catalogue; subsequent versions added posthumous works as well as those suppressed by the first Complete Edition. All are now superseded by McCorkle 2003.

  • Hofmann, Kurt. Die Erstdrucke der Werke von Robert Schumann: Bibliographie mit Wiedergabe von 234 Titelblättern. Tutzing, Germany: Schneider, 1979.

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    Highly specialized bibliography identifying, illustrating the title pages of, and describing in detail the physical characteristics of first issues of the first and authorized revised editions of standard versions of the works with and without opus number.

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  • Mayeda, Akio, and Klaus Wolfgang Niemöller. eds. Robert Schumann Neue Ausgabe sämtlicher Werke. Produced by the Robert-Schumann-Gesellschaft. Mainz, Germany: Schott, 1991–.

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    This new edition of Schumann’s works is becoming the best guide to the repertory, with extensive critical commentary, source studies, and overviews of the performance and reception history.

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  • McCorkle, Margit L. Thematisch-Bibliographisches Werkverzeichnis Neue Ausgabe sämtlicher Werke VIII.6. Mainz, Germany: Schott, 2003.

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    This new thematic catalogue supercedes earlier versions: it includes musical incipits and publication and performance information about Schumann’s known compositions, complete and incomplete. An English translation of the introduction guides the non-German speaker through its entries and provides useful background material. There is an extensive bibliography and helpful appendices. Supplements Vol. 6 of the Neue Ausgabe sämtlicher Werke, Series VIII.

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  • Munte, Friedrich. Verzeichnis des deutschsprachigen Schrifttums über Robert Schumann 1856–1970. Hamburg, Germany: Verlag der Musikalienhandlung Wagner, 1972.

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    Still useful guide to German sources on Schumann from his death to 1970.

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  • Schumann, Clara, ed. Robert Schumann’s Werke. Leipzig: Breitkopf und Härtel, 1881–1893.

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    Edited primarily by the composer’s wife, Clara (with assistance and advice from Brahms and Joachim), this is still the most complete edition of Schumann’s music, and the most readily available through reprints (notably by Dover). Not all works are included, however, and there is no critical commentary: for those see the Robert Schumann Neue Ausgabe sämtlicher Werke. On Brahms’s role as editor, see also Roesner 1990 in Performance.

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  • Seibold, Wolfgang. Familie, Freunde, Zeitgenossen. Die Widmunsträger der Schumannschen Werke. Schumann-Studien 5. Sinzig, Germany: Studio, 2008.

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    Documents the family members, friends, and contemporaries to whom Schumann dedicated his works.

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Schumann’s Writings

Throughout his life Schumann was a prolific writer, creating his own fictions as well as documenting and responding to the world around him. Few people can decipher Schumann’s handwriting, but fortunately several transcriptions have been published (mostly untranslated), some in multiple editions: the most up-to-date versions and, where possible, English versions, are included here. They include diaries (Schumann 1971–1978), poems (Heero 2003), collections of mottos (Hotaki 1998) and maxims (Nauhaus 2002), and notes of what Schumann read (Schumann 2007). There is a new German edition of his letters in process (Schumann 2009). Weissweiler 1994 provides translations for Schumann’s correspondence with Clara and Pleasants 1988 translates a sample of his criticism.

  • Heero, Aigi. Robert Schumanns Jugendlyrik: Kritische Edition und Kommentar. Schumann-Studien 3. Sinzig, Germany: Studio, 2003.

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    A critical edition of Schumann’s youthful writings. Based on the author’s doctoral thesis.

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  • Hotaki, Leander. Robert Schumanns Mottosammlung: Übertragung, Kommentar, Einführung. Freiburg, Germany: Rombach, 1998.

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    A critical edition of Schumann’s collection of mottos.

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  • Nauhaus, Gerd. Robert Schumann: Musikalische Haus- und Lebensregeln. Schumann-Studien 2. Sinzig, Germany: Studio, 2002.

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    Facsimile of a twelve-page collection of maxims Schumann originally intended to publish as part of the Album für die Jugend Op. 68. A transcription is provided along with an editorial commentary.

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  • Pleasants, Henry, trans. and ed. Schumann on Music: A Selection from the Writings. New York: Dover, 1988.

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    Schumann was editor of the Neue Zeitschrift für Musik from 1834 to 1844. Its focus on new compositions and its international contributors made it one of the age’s most influential music journals. Pleasants 1988 is a widely available translation of a selection from the Gesammelte Schriften über Musik und Musiker (Leipzig: Breitkopf und Härtel, 1854; rev. Martin Kreisig, 1914).

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  • Schumann, Robert. Tagebücher. 3 vols. Edited by Georg Eismann and Gerd Nauhaus. Leipzig: VEB Deutscher Verlag fur Musik, 1971–1987.

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    Schumann kept diaries throughout his life. From the day after their wedding until May 1844 he and Clara also kept a joint Marriage Diary, which documents their family and musical lives. After that Schumann noted daily events in household books (Haushaltbücher), while Clara kept a diary until her death (which is drawn on for Ein Künstlerleben nach Tagebücher und Briefen, edited by Berthold Litzmann, Leipzig: Breitkopf und Härtel, 1905, 1908). Excerpts are translated in The Marriage Diaries of Robert and Clara Schumann: From their Wedding Day through the Russia Trip, edited by Gerd Nauhaus, trans. Peter F. Ostwald (Boston: Northeastern University Press, 1993).

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  • Schumann, Robert. Dichtergarten für Musik. Eine Anthologie für Freunde der Literatur und Musik. Edited by Gerd Nauhaus, Ingrid Bosch, Leander Hotaki, and Kristin R. M. Krahe. Frankfurt-am-Main and Basel, Switzerland: Stroemfeld, 2007.

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    Schumann recorded what he read throughout his career. This fascinating facsimile edition reproduces texts associated with music.

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  • Schumann, Robert. Schumann Briefedition. Edited by Robert-Schumann-Haus Zwickau with the Institut für Musikwissenschaft der Hochschule für Musik Carl Maria von Weber Dresden and the Robert-Schumann-Foschungsstelle Düsseldorf. Cologne: Christoph Dohr, 2009–.

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    This much-needed new edition of Schumann’s letters with family, friends, and colleagues publishes a wider range and far greater number of letters than previously available, with extensive editorial commentary. There are helpful introductions to each section of the correspondence and to contributors. Context is provided by reference to the diaries and secondary literature.

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  • Weissweiler, Eva, and Susanna Ludwig, eds. The Complete Correspondence of Clara and Robert Schumann. 3 vols. Translated by Hildegard Fristch and Ronald L. Crawford. New York: Peter Lang, 1994.

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    There are several editions of the letters between Clara and Robert Schumann; this is the most recent available in translation. Originally published as Clara und Robert Schumann Briefwechsel, Kritische Gesamtausgabe, edited by Eva Weissweiler (2 vols., Basel, Switzerland: Stroemfeld/Roter Stern, 1984–1987).

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Source Studies

The critical commentaries and facsimiles included in the Robert Schumann Neue Ausgabe sämtlicher Werke (see Guides to Repertory and Literature) are gradually updating earlier source studies, of which there have been many. The sample included here represents a variety of genres, from Lieder (Appel 1997) and song cycles (Hallmark 1979) to piano pieces (Roesner 1984), symphonies (Finson 1989) and choral works (Leven-Keesen 1996). These, and the source studies included in Mayeda and Niemöller 1987, reveal much about the composer’s working methods, the reception of his music and performance practices (see also Performance).

  • Appel, Bernhard R. “Robert Schumanns ‘Mondnacht’ op. 39, no. 5.” In Festschrift Walter Wiora zum 90. Geburtstag. Edited by Ruth Seiberts and Christophe-Hellmut Mahling, 9–23. Mainz, Germany: Hans Schneider, 1997.

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    This volume is not widely available, but Appel’s essay is worth seeking out (as are the rest of his multiple Schumann publications). The autograph, copies, and first editions of Schumann’s most famous songs are compared, to shed light on his compositional practices.

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  • Finson, Jon W. Robert Schumann and the Study of Orchestral Composition: The Genesis of the First Symphony, op. 38. Oxford: Clarendon, 1989.

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    A study of the drafts and sketches for Schumann’s First Symphony, from the first version of 1841 to the final version of 1852.

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  • Hallmark, Rufus. The Genesis of Schumann’s “Dichterliebe”: A Source Study. Ann Arbor, MI: UMI Research, 1979.

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    An account of the compositional process of Schumann’s most famous song cycle, which includes observations about his treatment of the poems and tempi for performance.

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  • Leven-Keesen, Kathrin. Robert Schumann’s “Szenen aus Goethes Faust” (WoO 3). Studien zu Frühfassungen anhand des Autographs Wiede 11/3. Berlin: Kuhn, 1996.

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    Based on the author’s doctoral thesis, this German monograph examines the sources and early versions of Schumann’s Szenen aus Goethes Faust, which took him an unusually long time to complete.

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  • Mayeda, Akio, and Klaus Wolfgang Niemöller, eds. Schumanns Werke: Text und Interpretationen; 16 Studien. Schumann Forschungen 2. Mainz, Germany: Schott, 1987.

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    Edited by those in charge of the Robert Schumann Neue Ausgabe sämtlicher Werke, this multiauthor German-language collection includes several essays on the sources for particular works, including Schumann’s earliest sketchbooks (mostly piano exercises), his op. 40 Chamisso Lieder, the op. 41 String Quartets, Symphony op. 38, and Das Paradies und die Peri.

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  • Mayeda, Akio, and Klaus Wolfgang Niemöller, eds. Robert Schumann Neue Ausgabe sämtlicher Werke. Produced by the Robert-Schumann-Gesellschaft. Mainz, Germany: Schott, 1991–.

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    This new edition of Schumann’s works (RSA) supplants the Breitkopf und Härtel edition overseen by Clara Schumann and Brahms, although because it does not yet include all of Schumann’s works the earlier edition is still necessary. The RSA is invaluable for providing new critical editions of the music and texts, including facsimiles of autographs and sketchbooks, as well as McCorkle’s thematic catalogue and Burger’s documentary biography.

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  • Roesner, Linda C. “The Sources for Schumann’s Davidsbündlertänze, op. 6: Composition, Textural Problems, and the Role of Composer as Editor.” In Mendelssohn and Schumann: Essays on their Music and its Context. Edited by Jon W. Finson and R. Larry Todd, 53–70. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 1984.

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    Compares various editions to the autograph, considering how Schumann revised and reordered movements. Includes facsimiles of sources.

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Criticism

There are studies of Schumann’s own criticism: Plantinga 1967 provides an overview of his role as editor of the Neue Zeitschrift für Musik, while Grimes 2008 focuses on the “New Paths” article of 1853. There are also discussions of critical responses to Schumann, which complement entries in Reception. Pederson 1996 describes how his music was taken up by partisans around 1848; Ramroth 1991 considers how Schumann’s successor as editor of the Neue Zeitschrift für Musik responded to his music and aesthetics, as does Thym 1984.

  • Grimes, Nicole. “In Search of Absolute Inwardness and Spiritual Subjectivity? The Historical and Ideological Context of Schumann’s Neue Bahnen.” International Review of the Aesthetics and Sociology of Music 39 (2008): 139–163.

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    Discusses Schumann’s motivations for returning to criticism in 1853 to herald the talent of Brahms. Grimes focuses on Schumann’s ideological differences with his successor as editor of the Neue Zeitschrift für Musik, Hegelian Franz Brendel.

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  • Pederson, Sanna. “Romantic Music Under Siege in 1848.” In Music Theory in the Age of Romanticism. Edited by Ian Bent, 57–76. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 1996.

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    Drawn from Pederson’s excellent PhD thesis (University of Pennsylvania, 1995), this discussion of political tensions within music criticism at the time of the 1848 uprisings shines new light on Schumann’s reputation.

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  • Plantinga, Leon B. Schumann as Critic. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1967.

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    Classic study of Schumann’s activities as critic for and editor of the Neue Zeitschrift für Musik.

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  • Ramroth, Peter. Robert Schumann und Richard Wagner im geschichtsphilosophischen Urteil von Franz Brendel. Frankfurt-am-Main and New York: Peter Lang, 1991.

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    Based on the author’s 1990 PhD thesis, this German monograph examines Franz Brendel’s reception of Schumann and Wagner.

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  • Thym, Jürgen. “Schumann in Brendel’s Neue Zeitschrift für Musik from 1845 to 1856.” In Mendelssohn and Schumann: Essays on their Work and its Context. Edited by Jon W. Finson and R. Larry Todd, 21–36. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 1984.

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    Discusses critical responses to Schumann’s music in the last decade of his life, in the journal he once edited. One of the best introductions to musical politics in Germany in the mid-19th century.

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Biographies

Schumann wrote autobiographical sketches and there were reports by contemporaries such as Liszt 1994. The first book-length biography was by Wasielewski 1975 and there have been numerous retellings since. Burger and Nauhaus 1998 reproduce several documents from the life and the publication of records from Endenich (Appel 2006; some translated in Jensen 1998) help understanding of the composer’s situation during his final years. The diagnosis and effect of Schumann’s final illness has long been contentious (Ostwald 1985); his daughter Eugenie defended his reputation (Schumann 1927) as, more recently, has Worthen 2007. Biographies of Schumann’s family and friends (Clara, Brahms, Joseph Joachim, etc.) are also helpful.

  • Appel, Bernhard A., ed. Robert Schumann in Endenich (1854–1856). Krankenakten, Briefzeugnis und zeitgenössiche Berichte. Schumann-Forschungen 11. Mainz, Germany: Schott, 2006.

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    A substantial volume transcribing Schumann’s medical records from the asylum in Endenich as well as essays on his diagnosis. Excerpts are translated into English by Jensen and Worthen.

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  • Burger, Ernst, and Gerd Nauhaus, ed. Robert Schumann: eine Lebenschronik in Bildern und Dokumenten. Neue Ausgabe sämtlicher Werke VIII. 1. Mainz, Germany: Schott, 1998.

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    Although it has the appearance of a (hefty) coffee-table book, this volume still provides an engaging overview of Schumann’s career. It includes a chronology with commentary. There are fine reproductions of pictures and facsimiles of documents from the archives, and transcriptions of some primary sources. Supplements Vol. 1 of the Neue Ausgabe sämtlicher Werke, Series VIII.

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  • Jensen, Eric Frederick. “Schumann at Endenich: Buried Alive 1.” Musical Times 139.1861 (1998): 10–18.

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    Translations of the reports from Endenich are excerpted elsewhere (notably in Worthen), but the daily entries included here are valuable for non-German speakers. Continued in “Schumann at Endenich: Buried Alive 2,” Musical Times 139.1862 (1998): 14–23.

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  • Liszt, Franz. “Robert Schumann (1855).” Translated by John Michael Cooper, Christopher Anderson, and R. Larry Todd. In Schumann and His World. Edited by R. Larry Todd, 338–362. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1994.

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    Liszt’s lengthy essay on Schumann reveals the complex relationship between the composer and his contemporaries. Also in the Todd volume are reports from Schumann’s sometime librettist Richard Pohl and Eduard Hanslick on Schumann in the asylum. There are introductions to each writer. Originally published as “Robert Schumann [1856]” in Gesammelte Schriften, Vol. 4, edited by Lina Ramann (Leipzig: Breitkopf und Härtel, 1882), pp. 288–316.

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  • Ostwald, Peter. Schumann: The Inner Voices of a Musical Genius. Boston: Northeastern University Press, 1985.

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    An influential psychobiography. Drawing on the letters and diaries, Ostwald provides a colorful and deeply Romantic interpretation of Schumann’s life. Focusing on the composer’s psychiatric condition Ostwald concludes that he suffered from bipolar disorder and that incarceration at Endenich was in effect a prolonged suicide. For a contrasting viewpoint, see Worthen 2007.

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  • Schumann, Eugenie. Memoires of Eugenie Schumann. Translated by Marie Busch. London: Heinemann, 1927.

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    The first of two memoires by Schumann’s youngest daughter Eugenie (b. 1851–d. 1938) partly intent on salvaging her family’s reputation. Although not readily available, the book gives insight into how Schumann was perceived at the time. Originally published as Erinnerungen von Eugenie Schumann (Stuttgart: Engelhorn Verlag, 1925).

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  • Wasielewski, Wilhelm Joseph von. Life of Robert Schumann, with Letters, 1833–1852. Translated by A. L. Alger with a new introduction by Leon Plantinga. Detroit: Information Coordinators, 1975.

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    To Clara’s dismay, this first book-length biography, by Schumann’s concertmaster, was hugely influential. Many anecdotes, images, and assumptions took root here. So, too, did the tendency to use the life as a lens through which to view the works and the fascination with Schumann’s mental illness. Originally published as Robert Schumann: Eine Biographie (Dresden, Germany: Kunze, 1858). First translated in 1878.

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  • Worthen, John. Robert Schumann: Life and Death of a Musician. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2007.

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    Worthen focuses on the biography rather than the music. There is much useful information about the composer’s daily life. More controversially, Worthen argues that Schumann did not suffer from a psychiatric disorder but from syphilis so should not be portrayed as a “mad” composer.

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Collections of Essays

Multiauthored collections of essays, as well as offering a variety of perspectives, often also include important studies of particular works or issues. Two ongoing series, Schumann Forschungen and Schumann-Studien, represent current German-language research; they are often derived from major conferences. English-language collections such as Todd 1994 have tended to place Schumann in broader cultural contexts, including his relationship to his contemporaries (see Finson and Todd 1984); Kok and Tunbridge 2011 extends those contexts to include popular culture, politics, and 20th-century reception. Tibbetts 2010 gathers views of Schumann from today’s performers and scholars.

  • Finson, Jon W., and R. Larry Todd, eds. Mendelssohn and Schumann: Essays on Their Work and its Context. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 1984.

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    An interesting collection for bringing together chapters on Schumann and his contemporary Mendelssohn.

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  • Kok, Roe-Min, and Laura Tunbridge, eds. Rethinking Schumann. New York: Oxford University Press, 2011.

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    Eighteen essays by leading Anglo-American scholars on recent Schumann scholarship: there are sections on politics, popular cultures, analytical approaches, and 20th-century interpretations. Special attention is paid to Schumann’s later works.

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  • Mayeda, Akio, and Klaus Wolfgang Niemöller, eds. Schumann Forschungen. Mainz, Germany: Schott, 1984–.

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    This series (like the Robert Schumann Neue Ausgabe sämtlicher Werke; see Guides to Repertory and Literature) is produced by the Robert-Schumann-Gesellschaft in Düsseldorf. Several individual volumes are referred to throughout this bibliography. Unlike Schumann-Studien it is more interpretive in approach. Each volume consists of essays by multiple authors (some taken from conferences). Several include hitherto unavailable source materials.

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    • Nauhaus, Gerd, ed. Schumann-Studien. Sinzig, Germany: Studio Verlag, 1988–.

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      This ongoing series of German studies is produced by the Robert-Schumann-Gesellschaft in Zwickau. Mostly source studies. Individual volumes are cited elsewhere.

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      • Tibbetts, John C. Schumann: A Chorus of Voices. New York: Amadeus, 2010.

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        Tibbetts has spent years gathering interviews by performers and scholars of Schumann’s music, some of which has been presented as a fifteen-part radio documentary (see The World of Robert Schumann). An expanded and updated version comprises this book. Both provide an overview of Schumann’s career and some insight into how he is perceived today.

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      • Todd, R. Larry, ed. Schumann and His World. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1994.

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        Contains excellent essays by leading American Schumann scholars on the composer in cultural context, as well as translations of German essays and some 19th-century criticism. Various essays have individual entries here.

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      Musical Works

      The bulk of scholarship on Schumann’s music deals with particular works or genres. The entries here are thus divided into Keyboard Music, Vocal Music, Chamber Music, and Orchestral Music. However, there are some common interests across genres, some of which are given separate sections. First is Schumann’s Cultural Context: his literary and artistic interests. Second is his use of Quotation, reflecting his relationship with other artists and composers, family, and friends. Third has to do with categorization by genre, for Schumann often blurred the boundaries between them to create new hybrids. Fourth is his experimentation with thematic processes, form, harmony, rhythm, and meter, all of which create interesting challenges for analysis (see Analytical Studies). Finally, there is Schumann’s stylistic development through his career, and the “problem” of his Late Works. Many of the anthologies and general overviews contain surveys and studies that for reasons of space have not always been cited separately here. Similarly, the excellent critical commentaries emerging in the Robert Schumann Neue Ausgabe sämtlicher Werke (see Guides to Repertory and Literature) should be consulted.

      Cultural Context

      Schumann famously claimed that his music reflected the world around him. Although scholars have mostly concentrated on the aesthetic (Brown 1968, Floros 1980–1981) and literary (Wendt 1993), the political (Daverio 1997), commercial (Kok 2003), and other arts (Bostein 1994) have been considered.

      • Botstein, Leon. “History, Rhetoric and the Self: Music Making in German-Speaking Europe, 1800–1860.” In Schumann and His World. Edited by R. Larry Todd, 3–46. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1994.

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        A wide-ranging essay placing Schumann in cultural context; useful as a reminder of his interest in visual arts as well as literature.

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      • Brown, Thomas Alan. The Aesthetics of Robert Schumann. New York: Philosophical Library, 1968.

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        A classic introduction to Schumann’s aesthetic views and literary interests.

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      • Daverio, John. “Songs without the Gate: Schumann and the Dresden Revolution.” Saggiatore musicale 4 (1997): 87–112.

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        Schumann’s response to the 1848 uprisings was negatively compared to Wagner. Daverio follows Kapp and other German scholars (see Appel 1993, cited under Late Works) in arguing that while he did not fight on the barricades, he was far from passive, following events through newspapers and channeling his energies into politically motivated composition.

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      • Floros, Constantin. “Schumanns musikalische Poetik.” In Musik-Konzepte Sonderband: Robert Schumann. Vols. 1–2. Edited by Heinz K. Metzger and Rainer Riehn, 90–104. Munich: Edition Text + Kritik, 1980–1981.

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        Clear introduction to Schumann’s poetics.

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      • Kok, Roe-Min. “Romantic Childhood, Bourgeois Commercialism and the Music of Robert Schumann.” PhD diss., Harvard University, 2003.

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        Rich contextualization of Schumann’s music about childhood through examination of primary sources, correspondence with publishers, and cultural history.

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      • Wendt, Matthias, ed. Schumann und seine Dichter. Schumann Forschungen 4. Mainz, Germany: Schott, 1993.

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        A collection of German-language essays about Schumann’s relationships with and responses to the poets he set. Includes essays on British poets, Eichendorff, Heine, Hofmann, Kerner, Kulmann, Lenau, Rückert, and on his reading habits in the late 1840s.

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      Quotation

      A recurring theme in interpretations of Schumann’s music is his use of quotations, allusions and ciphers, seen to reflect on his relationship to other composers and to comment on his personal life. The articles included in this section consider the issue of quotation more directly. Neighbour 1984 focuses on musical connections with Brahms. Marston 1990–1991 concentrates on references to Beethoven and is the starting point for the taxonomy of Todd 1994. Intention is a key issue: Sams 1969 and Reynolds 2003 find multiple meanings; Daverio 2002 and Newcomb 2003 are more skeptical.

      • Daverio, John. “Schumann: Cryptographer or Pictographer?” In Crossing Paths: Schubert, Schumann, and Brahms. By John Daverio, 65–102. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2002.

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        Daverio proposes a new model for understanding Schumann’s use of ciphers and mottos.

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      • Marston, Nicholas. “Schumann’s Monument to Beethoven.” 19th-Century Music 14 (1990–1991): 247–264.

        DOI: 10.1525/ncm.1991.14.3.02a00030Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

        Considers the influence of late Beethoven, specifically the Op. 131 string quartet, on Schumann’s Dichterliebe.

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      • Neighbour, Oliver. “Brahms and Schumann: Two Opus Nines and Beyond.” 19th-Century Music 7 (1984): 266–270.

        DOI: 10.1525/ncm.1984.7.3.02a00080Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

        This brief article explores the multiple quotations from Schumann’s music (especially Carnaval) found in Brahms’s Variationen über ein Thema von Schumann. It does not make any grand claims but is a good case study in musical homage.

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      • Newcomb, Anthony. “The Hunt for Reminiscences in Nineteenth-Century Germany.” In Music and the Aesthetics of Modernity. Edited by Karol Berger and Anthony Newcomb, 111–135. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2003.

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        A welcome corrective to Schumann quotation hunters. In this essay from conference proceedings Newcomb points out that by the 1840s originality, not quotation, was most valued by composers and critics.

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      • Reynolds, Christopher. Motives for Allusion: Context and Content in Nineteenth-Century Music. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2003.

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        Pursues Sams’s ciphers (Sams 1969) further, giving numerous examples of musical cross-references by 19th-century composers. There are several examples from Schumann.

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      • Sams, Eric. The Songs of Robert Schumann. London: Methuen, 1969.

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        If you are an undergraduate writing an essay about Schumann’s songs, use Finson 2007 (cited under Solo Songs) instead; it is a superior guide. The reason that this volume is included here is as background to Daverio and Newcomb. Cryptographer Sams argues that Schumann’s music is riddled with musical codes that reflect his personal life.

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      • Todd, R. Larry. “On Quotation in Schumann’s Music.” In Schumann and His World. Edited by R. Larry Todd, 80–112. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1994.

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        Builds on Marston’s discussions of Schumann’s quotations from and allusions to Beethoven (see Marston 1990–1991; and Marston 1992, cited under 1830s). Categorizes Schumann’s quotations into three types: references to music from the past, to that of the present, and from his own works.

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      Keyboard Music

      Dietel 1989 surveys all the piano works, while Rosen 1998 and Kranefeld 2000 propose some intriguing and, particularly in the case of Rosen, influential interpretive approaches to a selection of pieces. Stinson 2006 reminds us that Schumann also wrote for organ and engaged with its historical repertory. There are separate sections on the piano music from the 1830s and from After 1840.

      • Dietel, Gerhard. “Eine neues poetische Zeit”: Musikanschauung und stilistische Tendenzen im Klavierwerk Robert Schumanns. Kassel, Germany: Bärenreiter, 1989.

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        One of the only volumes treating all of Schumann’s solo piano works. Discusses his stylistic development throughout his career.

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      • Kranefeld, Ulrike. Der Nachschaffende Hörer: Rezeptionsästhetische Studien zur Musik Robert Schumanns. Stuttgart: Verlag J. B. Metzler, 2000.

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        An inventive German study of interpretive practices, taking examples from various piano works by Schumann.

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      • Rosen, Charles. The Romantic Generation. Boston: Harvard University Press, 1998.

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        One of the most evocative and provocative writers on music, Rosen dedicates one chapter to Schumann’s piano music. The second and third chapters discuss Schumann in terms of the Romantic fragment (a popular topic among Anglo-American scholars at the time) and makes connections between his instrumental music and poetics.

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      • Stinson, Russell. “Robert Schumann.” In The Reception of Bach’s Organ Works from Mendelssohn to Brahms. By Russell Stinson, 76–101. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2006.

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        A chapter on Schumann’s critical and compositional response to Bach’s music for organ.

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      1830s

      With the exception of the Piano Concerto (see Orchestral Music), Schumann composed his most famous piano works in the 1830s and most scholarship is geared toward that repertory. Marston 1992 introduces the main issues as well as a focused study of the Fantasie Op. 12. As well as several Analytical Studies many scholars approach the piano music of the 1830s with reference to Schumann’s literary interests. Deahl 1996 considers the relationship of Kreisleriana to E. T. A. Hoffmann; Reiman 2004 explores the influence of Jean Paul, also considered by Hoeckner 2002. Kramer 1993 considers broader cultural and theoretical backdrops to Carnaval.

      • Deahl, Lora. “Robert Schumann’s Kreisleriana and Double Novel Structure.” International Journal of Musicology 5 (1996): 131–145.

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        Pursues the relationship between Kreisleriana and E.T.A. Hoffmann’s novel Lebensansichten des Katers Murr as reflected in Schumann’s treatment of musical forms, themes, and narrative.

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      • Hoeckner, Berthold. “Schumann’s Distance.” In Programming the Absolute: Nineteenth-Century German Music and the Hermeneutics of the Moment. By Berthold Hoeckner, 51–114. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2002.

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        Contemplates the ways in which Schumann’s Papillons, Davidsbündlertänze, Fantasie op. 12 and Novelletten evoke the aesthetic category of “distance” found in the writings of Novalis and Jean Paul. “Distance” is fundamental to these artists’ conceptions of Romanticism and helps explain the relationship between music analysis and poetic criticism. This is a revised version of “Schumann and Romantic Distance.” Journal of the American Musicological Society 50 (1997), 55–132.

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      • Kramer, Lawrence. “Carnaval, Cross-Dressing, and the Woman in the Mirror.” In Musicology and Difference: Gender and Sexuality in Music Scholarship. Edited by Ruth A. Solie, 305–325. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1993.

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        This reading of Carnaval shows some sign of age but raises interesting issues to do with musical representation, particularly impersonations of feminine characteristics.

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      • Marston, Nicholas. Schumann: Fantasie, op. 17. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 1992.

        DOI: 10.1017/CBO9780511620140.011Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

        Both a handbook to a particular work and an excellent general introduction for undergraduates to interpretive issues in Schumann’s piano music. Marston considers Schumann’s use of musical and poetic allusions and quotations. He also provides an in-depth analysis of the formal and thematic structure of the Fantasie Op. 17.

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      • Reiman, Erika. Schumann’s Piano Cycles and the Novels of Jean Paul. Rochester, NY: University of Rochester Press, 2004.

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        This study argues that Schumann’s piano music from the 1830s bears structural and aesthetic similarities to the writings of Jean Paul. Reiman provides a more detailed introduction to Jean Paul than typically found in anglophone Schumann scholarship. Close readings of Schumann’s works are filtered through literary theory.

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      After 1840

      Inevitably there has been less written about the unfamiliar keyboard music Schumann wrote after 1840. An overview is provided by Knechtges-Obrecht 1985. Reflecting a change in Schumann’s compositional practices, studies are less literary in focus, with perhaps the exception of Jensen 1984 on Waldszenen. Jost 1989, also on Waldszenen, considers broader cultural contexts (especially the visual arts) as well. Jung-Kaiser and Kruse 2006 documents Schumann’s later collections of piano pieces. The composer’s commercial savvy is demonstrated by Newcomb 1990 and Kok 2008; the latter also discusses the problem of the Late Works. So, too, does Daverio 1996, on Schumann’s final piano cycle.

      • Daverio, John. “Madness or Prophecy? Schumann’s Gesänge der Frühe, op.133.” In Nineteenth-Century Piano Music: Essays in Performance and Analysis. Edited by David Witten, 187–232. New York: Routledge, 1996.

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        Considers how to interpret Schumann’s last piano cycle. On the one hand, its idiosyncrasies have been heard to reflect his mental illness, on the other, as music of the future.

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      • Jensen, Eric Frederick. “A New Manuscript of Robert Schumann’s Waldszenen op. 82.” Journal of Musicology 3 (1984): 69–89.

        DOI: 10.1525/jm.1984.3.1.03a00040Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

        A discussion of the sources for and revisions of Schumann’s Waldszenen. Also provides an interesting reading of its musical poetics.

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      • Jost, Peter. Robert Schumanns “Waldszenen” op. 82: zum Thema Wald in der romantischen Klaviermusik. Saarbrücken, Germany: Saarbrücker Druckerei und Verlag, 1989.

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        The piano cycle Waldszenen relates in interesting ways to his earlier works, especially in its treatment of poetic links. Jost considers the music against representations of the German romantic forest. The book also reminds us that Schumann was interested in the visual arts as well as literature.

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      • Jung-Kaiser, Ute, and Matthias Kruse, eds. Schumanns Albumblätter. Hildesheim, Germany, and New York: Georg Olms, 2006.

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        A collection of German-language essays about Schumann’s interest in musical albums. It is primarily concerned with sources, but provides useful insights into an underexplored area of Schumann’s keyboard output.

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      • Knechtges-Obrecht, Irmgard. Robert Schumann im Spiegelwerk seiner späten Klavierwerke. Regensburg, Germany: Gustav Bosse, 1985.

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        German monograph examining the compositional practices and reception of Schumann’s later piano works.

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      • Kok, Roe-Min. “Negotiating Children’s Music: New Evidence for Schumann’s ‘Charming’ Late Style.” Acta musicologica 80 (2008): 99–128.

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        Kok’s research investigates Schumann’s relationships with music publishers. In this article she compares discussions of Schumann’s children’s music with ideas about his late style.

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      • Newcomb, Anthony. “Schumann and the Marketplace: From Butterflies to Hausmusik.” In Nineteenth-Century Piano Music. Edited by R. Larry Todd, 258–315. New York: Routledge, 1990.

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        Counters the tendency to think of Schumann as unworldly by tracing his career through the 1840s, arguing that he increasingly geared his output toward domestic music-making or Hausmusik.

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      Vocal Music

      Schumann was one of the greatest song composers of the 19th century. His solo songs included famous cycles such as Dichterliebe Op. 48 and Frauenliebe und -leben Op. 42. Although less well known, his Late Songs have attracted more attention recently. Schumann was similarly prolific in other vocal genres, composing larger-scale vocal works for chorus and the operatic stage later in his career.

      Solo Songs

      Schumann’s songs receive the lion’s share of scholarship; the citations included here only scratch the surface of what is available and have been chosen because they indicate the range of approaches. There is a great deal written about the famous song cycles from 1840–1841, so there are separate sections on Dichterliebe Op. 48 and Frauenliebe und -leben Op. 42. There is also a separate section on the less familiar later songs. As well as close readings of music-text relationships, the groups of analyses and interpretations reflect changing trends in musicology.

      • Ferris, David. Schumann’s Eichendorff Liederkreis and the Genre of the Romantic Cycle. New York: Oxford University Press, 2000.

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        A detailed analysis of the poetry and music of Schumann’s much discussed Op. 39. Ferris is also concerned with the song cycle as a genre. Like Perrey 2002, he argues that the cycle should be perceived as a fragmentary, open-ended form.

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      • Finson, Jon W. The Book of Songs. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2007.

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        Finson sets out to replace Sams 1969 (see Quotation) as the English and American undergraduate textbook of choice. His book should: it provides a clear account of all Schumann’s songs, making use of recent archival research and also considering performance contexts.

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      • Miller, Richard. Singing Schumann: An Interpretive Guide for Performers. New York: Oxford University Press, 1999.

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        This guide to interpreting Schumann’s solo and duet songs will be useful for students and teachers of performance. Some background information is included as well as insights from earlier studies by Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, Eric Sams, and Jack M. Stein.

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      • Schanze, Helmut, and Krischan Schulte. Literarische Vorlagen der ein- und mehrstimmigen Lieder, Gesängen und Deklamationen. Robert Schumann: Neue Ausgabe sämtlicher Werke 8.2. Mainz, Germany: Schott, 2002.

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        An invaluable German guide to Schumann’s literary sources for his solo and multivoiced works. Includes biographies of the poets.

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      • Schulte, Krischan, ed. “. . .was Ihres Zaubergriffels würdig wäre!” Die Textbasis für Robert Schumanns Lieder für Solostimmen. Schumann Forschungen 10. Mainz, Germany: Schott, 2005.

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        Documents Schumann’s poetic sources for his solo songs and his adaptations of them during the creative process. See also Schanze and Schulte 2002.

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      • Thym, Jürgen, ed. Of Poetry and Song: Approaches to the 19th-Century Lied. Rochester, NY: University of Rochester Press, 2010.

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        Essays (some reprints) focusing on text-music relationships by highly respected Schumann scholars Thym and Hallmark and by literature experts Harry Seeling and Ann C. Fehn. There are chapters on Schumann’s Rückert Lieder, the Eichendorff Liederkreis, Schumann’s Heine cycles opp. 24 and 48 (Dichterliebe) and on Schumann’s influence on Wolf and Pfitzner.

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      • Thym, Jürgen. “Schumann: Reconfiguring the Lied.” In The Cambridge Companion to the Lied. Edited by James Parsons, 120–141. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 2004.

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        Representative of several multiauthor volumes on 19th-century Lieder (the German word for art song) that include chapters on Schumann (e.g., Hallmark’s German Lieder in the Nineteenth Century). A good guide for undergraduates. This Companion also provides a general history of the Lied and some discussion on performance issues.

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      Dichterliebe Op. 48

      Studies of Dichterliebe from the past fifty years inevitably reflect more general developments in musicology. The sample here begins chronologically with a critical edition (Komar 1971) and autograph study (Hallmark 1979). Kerman 1998 attempted to break a new path away from formal analysis, and is still a touchstone for debates about the value of coherence in musical works. Agawu 1984 concentrates on structural “highpoints” within the cycle while Cone 1992 disentangles poetic and musical voices. Perrey 2002 argues that the aesthetic of the fragment is key to understanding the cycle, a view countered by Hoeckner 2006.

      • Agawu, V. Kofi. “Structural ‘Highpoints’ in Schumann’s Dichterliebe: Duration, Texture, Pitch.” Music Analysis 3 (1984): 159–180.

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        Explores the construction of “highpoints” in the cycle with reference to Heine’s notion of “reversal” and by considering musical elements (duration, register, texture) often overlooked by other analytical methods.

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      • Cone, Edward T. “Poet’s Love or Composer’s Love.” In Music and Text: Critical Inquiries. Edited by Paul Scher, 177–192. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 1992.

        DOI: 10.1017/CBO9780511518355Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

        Useful discussion of the relationship between the voices of poet and composer, taking examples from Dichterliebe.

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      • Hallmark, R. The Genesis of Schumann’s “Dichterliebe”: A Source Study. Ann Arbor, MI: UMI Research, 1979.

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        An account of the compositional process of Schumann’s most famous song cycle, which includes observations about his treatment of the poems and tempi for performance

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      • Hoeckner, Berthold. “Paths through Dichterliebe.” 19th-Century Music 30 (2006): 65–80.

        DOI: 10.1525/ncm.2006.30.1.065Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

        With reference to 19th-century theorist Gottfried Weber argues, contrary to “fragmentary” reading of Perrey 2002, for the importance of tonal and narrative coherence.

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      • Kerman, Joseph. “How We Got into Analysis, and How to Get Out.” In Write All These Down: Essays on Music. By Joseph Kerman, 12–32. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1998.

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        A classic for classroom discussion of analysis and what became known as new musicology. Kerman argues that instead of the graphs in Komar 1971 analysts should embrace criticism to enhance their interpretations. Originally published in Critical Inquiry 7 (1980): 311–331.

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      • Komar, Arthur, ed. Robert Schumann “Dichterliebe”: An Authoritative Score, Historical Background, Essays in Analysis, Views and Comments. New York: Norton, 1971.

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        This volume has become famous in Schumann scholarship less for its edition of the score (though it remains the best currently available) than for the accompanying commentary, which includes Allen Forte’s essay on Heinrich Schenker’s graphs for songs 2–4. The latter are often discussed in music theory and analysis classes.

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      • Kopp, David. “Intermediate States of Key in Schumann.” In Rethinking Schumann. Edited by Roe-Min Kok and Laura Tunbridge, 300–325. New York: Oxford University Press, 2011.

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        Revisits the first song of Dichterliebe, “Im wünderschönen Monat Mai,” from the perspective of 19th-century conceptions of key.

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      • Perrey, Beate J. Schumann’s “Dichterliebe” and Early Romantic Poetics: Fragmentation of Desire. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 2002.

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        Pursues the idea of the Romantic fragment as a framing device through which to analyze Schumann’s cycle.

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      Frauenliebe und -leben Op. 42

      As with Dichterliebe, studies of Frauenliebe reflect changing analytical and interpretive fashions. The former are surveyed by Agawu 1992, in an article that has stood the test of time. Solie 1992 broke new ground with her feminist reading of the cycle, which has since been critiqued and nuanced in a number of ways. Cusick 1994 considers the cycle through the lens of performance. Muxfeldt 2001 enhances our understanding through reference to literary and social history. Samuels 2006 compares the female protagonist to the male one of Dichterliebe. Dunsby 2007 contradicts Solie through attention to analytical detail, while Guralnik 2006 reinterprets the cycle’s autobiographical implications for Schumann.

      • Agawu, V. Kofi. “Theory and Practice in the Analysis of the Nineteenth-Century Lied.” Music Analysis 11.1 (1992): 3–36.

        DOI: 10.2307/854301Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

        Evaluates different models for song analysis, using the first song of Frauenliebe as the main example.

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      • Cusick, Suzanne G. “Gender and the Cultural Work of a Classical Music Performance.” repercussions 3 (1994): 77–110.

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        Uses a recording of Frauenliebe by Jessye Norman to investigate the relationship between text, score, and performance strategies, paying particular attention to gender issues.

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      • Dunsby, Jonathan. “Why Sing? Lieder and Song Cycles.” In The Cambridge Companion to Schumann. Edited by Beate Perrey, 102–122. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 2007.

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        Within a general overview of Schumann’s songwriting Dunsby takes the opportunity to correct Solie’s analysis. If nothing else, if proves how contentious the original still is.

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      • Guralnick, Elissa S. “‘Ah Clara, I am not worthy of your love’: Rereading Frauenliebe und -leben, the Poetry and the Music.” Music and Letters 87 (2006): 580–605.

        DOI: 10.1093/ml/gcl080Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

        Another, perhaps less convincing, interpretation of gender politics within the cycle. Guralnick reads Chamisso’s protagonist as an independent spirit. The husband is said to be represented in Schumann’s setting by the piano, reflecting the composer’s anxiety about marrying Clara.

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      • Muxfeldt, Kristina. “Frauenliebe und Leben Now and Then.” 19th-Century Music 25 (2001): 27–48.

        DOI: 10.1525/ncm.2001.25.1.27Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

        An excellent article that nuances debates about feminist interpretations of Frauenliebe und -leben by considering Chamisso’s poems, and Schumann’s settings of them, in the context of gender relations in the 1830s.

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      • Samuels, Robert. “Narratives of Masculinity and Femininity: Two Schumann Song Cycles.” In Phrase and Subject: Studies in Literature and Music. Edited by Delia da Soussa Correa, 135–146. Oxford: Legenda, 2006.

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        Unusually compares gender representation in Dichterliebe and Frauenliebe. Otherwise focuses on the construction of narrative within the cycles.

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      • Solie, Ruth A. “Whose Life? The Gendered Self in Schumann’s Frauenliebe Songs.” In Music and Text: Critical Inquiries. Edited by Steven Paul Scher, 219–240. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 1992.

        DOI: 10.1017/CBO9780511518355Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

        A provocative essay presenting a feminist reading of Schumann’s Frauenliebe und -leben. Its “new musicology” politics now seem dated, but it still provides a useful starting point for discussions in the classroom. Solie’s interpretation has been most effectively critiqued by Muxfeldt; Dunsby and Guralnick also offer alternative readings.

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      Late Songs

      Schumann returned to song composition in the late 1840s. Their coincidence with the perceived onset of his late style (for more on which see Late Works) was detrimental to their reception. However, Mahlert 1983 and Finson 1990 argue convincingly that they reflect broader aesthetic discussions of the time. Along similar lines, Youens 2005 concentrates on issues of nationalism.

      Larger-Scale Vocal Works

      Schumann’s fame during his lifetime rested less on his songs than on large-scale works for chorus and orchestra, especially Das Paradies und die Peri (see Daverio 1994). His literary interests were evident in his decision to set both parts of Goethe’s Faust (Burger-Güntert 2006); his interest in theatre in the choice of Manfred (Tunbridge 2003) and his politics in the ballads (Daverio 2002). His one opera, Genoveva, was not a great success, but Ewert 2003 shines light on its background and reception. Generic categorization of the choral music continues to be debated, from the overview of Probst 1975 to Daverio 1994 on the choral ballades and Beller-McKenna 2005 on the Requiem idea. There is more material in Source Studies and Late Works.

      • Beller-McKenna, Daniel. “Distance and Disembodiment: Harp, Horns, and the Requiem Idea in Schumann and Brahms.” Journal of Musicology 22 (2005): 47–89.

        DOI: 10.1525/jm.2005.22.1.47Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

        Responds to Daverio’s discussion of the “Requiem Idea” in Daverio 2002. Pays particular attention to Schumann’s use of instrumentation to convey the distance between the living and dead.

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      • Burger-Güntert, Edda. Robert Schumanns “Szenen aus Goethes Faust”: Dichtung und Musik. Rombach Wissenschaften: Reihe Litterae 140. Freiburg im Breisgau, Germany: Rombach, 2006.

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        Considers the sources for Schumann’s Faustszenen and their musical setting against the backdrop of 19th-century Goethe reception.

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      • Daverio, John. “Schumann’s ‘New Genre for the Concert Hall’: Das Paradies und die Peri in the Eyes of a Contemporary.” In Schumann and His World. Edited by R. Larry Todd, 129–155. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1994.

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        Discusses the hybrid genre of the work that enjoyed most success during Schumann’s lifetime. Includes substantial translations of Eduard Krüger’s 1845 review of Das Paradies und die Peri.

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      • Daverio, John. “‘Einheit, Freiheit, Vaterland’: Intimations of Utopia in Robert Schumann’s Late Choral Music.” In Musical and German National Identity. Edited by Pamela Potter, 59–77. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2002.

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        On the political implications of Schumann’s poetic choices and musical settings in his four choral ballads.

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      • Ewert, Hansjörg. Der Oper “Genoveva” von Robert Schumann. Tutzing, Germany: Hans Schneider, 2003.

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        A book-length study of Schumann’s only completed opera, considering the literary sources, musical workings and reception. Also gives useful materials on the biographical and cultural contexts for Schumann’s approach.

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      • Probst, Gisela. Robert Schumanns Oratorien. Neue musikgeschichte Forschungen 9. Wiesbaden, Germany: Breitkopf & Härtel, 1975.

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        The status of the oratorio in the mid-19th century is the starting point for a dated but still useful survey of Schumann’s choral works. Considers the tension between private and public performances and Schumann’s ideas about opera.

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      • Tunbridge, Laura. “Schumann’s Manfred in the Mental Theatre.” Cambridge Opera Journal 15 (2003): 153–183.

        DOI: 10.1017/S0954586703001678Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

        Examines Schumann’s melodramatic setting of Byron’s Manfred and its performance contexts. Concentrates on poet’s and composer’s ambivalent relationship to theatricality.

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      Orchestral Music

      Schumann’s orchestral works did not fare well in the 20th century. There have been various attempts to rehabilitate them, through reexamining his orchestration (Kapp 1982) and the formal and tonal strategies of the Second Symphony Newcomb 1984), Third Symphony (Musgrave 1996), and Violin Concerto (Struck 1988). The expectations of particular genres are dealt with by Abraham 1946 on the overtures, Finson 1983 on Op. 52, Föhrenbach 2002 on the Konzertstück for four horns, and Macdonald 2005 on the Piano Concerto). There are excellent critical commentaries in the Robert Schumann Neue Ausgabe sämtlicher Werke (see Guides to Repertory and Literature).

      • Abraham, Gerald. “On a Dull Overture by Schumann.” Monthly Musical Record 76 (1946): 238–245.

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        Not only does this brief essay have the most provocative title, Abraham puts his finger on the core problem of Schumann’s orchestral music: the tension between programmaticism and politics. The dull overture is Schumann’s Hermann und Dorothea. Reprinted in Slavonic and Romantic Music: Essays and Studies (New York: St Martin’s, 1968).

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      • Finson, Jon W. “Schumann, Popularity, and the Ouvertüre, Scherzo und Finale, Opus 52.” Musical Quarterly 69 (1983): 1–26.

        DOI: 10.1093/mq/LXIX.1.1Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

        Traces Schumann’s determination to gain a wider audience in mid-career, supported by an examination of the revisions made to the movement order of Op. 52.

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      • Föhrenbach, Elisabeth. Die Gattung Konzertstück in der Rezeption Robert Schumanns. Kassel, Germany: Merseburger, 2002.

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        PhD dissertation (Freiburg University) on the genre of the concert piece as seen by Schumann and his contemporaries. Includes discussion of Schumann’s Konzertstück for four horns Op. 86, and transcribes several reviews of concert pieces.

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      • Kapp, Reinhard. “Das Orchester Schumanns.” In Robert Schumann II. Edited by Heinz-Klaus Metzger and Rainer Riehn, 191–236. Musik-Konzepte. Munich: Edition Text + Kritik, 1982.

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        Responds to criticism of Schumann’s orchestration. The Third Symphony is the main example: Kapp sees its block-grouping of instruments as a manifestation of Schumann’s republican sympathies.

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      • Macdonald, Claudia. Robert Schumann and the Piano Concerto. New York: Routledge, 2005.

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        Macdonald has published several articles on Schumann’s piano concertos. This book puts his most famous, Op. 54, in historical and critical context. Its formal and stylistic features and virtuosic aspects are discussed.

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      • Musgrave, Michael. “Symphony and Symphonic Scenes: Issues of Structure and Context in Schumann’s ‘Rhenish’ Symphony.” In Analytical Strategies and Musical Interpretation: Essays on Nineteenth- and Twentieth-Century Music. Edited by Craig Ayrey and Mark Everist, 120–148. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 1996.

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        Of all Schumann’s symphonies, the Third has been the subject of the greatest number of essays. Musgrave is fairly representative in his concentration on the relationship between its programmatic roots and structural features.

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      • Newcomb, Anthony. “Once more ‘between Absolute and Programme Music’: Schumann’s Second Symphony.” 19th-Century Music 7 (1984): 233–250.

        DOI: 10.1525/ncm.1984.7.3.02a00060Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

        Argues that the negative critical reception of Schumann’s Second Symphony in the 20th century resulted from a lack of sympathy with its programmatic aspects. Rethinking the music in terms of 19th-century narrative archetypes and thematic development is said to be more sensitive to its original context.

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      • Struck, Michael. Robert Schumann: Violinkonzert d-moll. Munich: Fink, 1988.

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        Reassesses one of Schumann’s most controversial late works, examining its compositional and reception history.

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      Chamber Music

      Despite the popularity of works like the Piano Quintet, there is relatively little written about Schumann’s chamber music. Daverio 1998 and Kohlhase 1979 provide overviews, the former introductory and latter extensive. Otherwise the Op. 41 quartets are best served by Hedges Brown 2004; the Piano Quartet and Quintet are analyzed by Smith 2011. Edler 2004 provides a selection of recent German perspectives.

      • Daverio, John. “‘Beautiful and Abstruse Conversations’: the Chamber Music of Schumann.” In Nineteenth-Century Chamber Music. Edited by Stephen Hefling, 208–241. New York: Schirmer, 1998.

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        Good introduction for students.

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      • Edler, Arnfried, ed. Die Kammermusik Clara und Robert Schumanns: Musikhistorisches Symposium—24. Mai 2002. Hannover, Germany: Institut für Musikpädagogische Forschung der Hochschule für Musik und Theater, 2004.

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        German conference proceedings on Schumann’s chamber music, including contributions by established scholars.

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      • Hedges Brown, Julie. “Higher Echoes of the Past in the Finale of Schumann’s 1842 Piano Quartet.” Journal of the American Musicological Society 57 (2004): 511–564.

        DOI: 10.1525/jams.2004.57.3.511Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

        Reexamines the formal strategies of the finale of Op. 47 in the context of his earlier piano pieces, as a response to Schubert and Beethoven, and as a reflection of his relationship with Clara.

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      • Kohlhase, Hans. Die Kammermusik Robert Schumanns: Stilistische Untersuchungen. 3 vols. Regensburg, Germany: Gustav Bosse, 1979.

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        Useful doctoral dissertation from the University of Hamburg detailing the sources and histories of Schumann’s chamber works. Also considers their formal strategies (particularly cyclic form) and musical borrowings.

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      • Smith, Peter. “Associative Harmony, Tonal Pairing, and Middleground Structure in Schumann’s Sonata Expositions: The Role of the Mediant in the First Movements of the Piano Quintet, Piano Quartet, and Rhenish Symphony.” In Rethinking Schumann. Edited by Roe-Min Kok and Laura Tunbridge, 235–264. New York: Oxford University Press, 2011.

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        An analysis of some characteristic harmonic and formal features in Schumann’s chamber music for strings and piano. Familiarity with Schenkerian analytical methods would be helpful for readers.

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      Late Works

      Awareness of Schumann’s mental illness has for a long time negatively inflected interpretations of his works. This is particularly true of his “late” period, from the late 1840s onward. In the early 1980s, however, a cluster of German scholars began to examine late Schumann more closely, beginning the process of reevaluation. Kapp 1984 provided an overview, while Mahlert 1983 (cited under Late Songs) concentrated on the songs and Struck 1984 on the instrumental works. Appel 1993 is notable for concentrating on Schumann’s musical life in Düsseldorf rather than on perceptions of his late style, the focus of Tadday 2006 and, in English, Tunbridge 2007.

      • Appel, Bernhard A., ed. Schumann in Düsseldorf: Werke-Texte-Interpretationen. Mainz, Germany: Schott, 1993.

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        Note the title: “Schumann in Düsseldorf” rather than anything to do with “lateness” or mental or creative decline. A collection of essays about Schumann’s activities in his final years.

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      • Burnham, Scott. “Late Styles.” In Rethinking Schumann. Edited by Roe-Min Kok and Laura Tunbridge, 411–430. New York: Oxford University Press, 2011.

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        An evocative essay that contemplates Schumann’s late music—particularly that concerned with death—against other artists’ late styles.

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      • Kapp, Reinhard. Studien zum Spätwerk Robert Schumanns. Tutzing, Germany: H. Schneider, 1984.

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        One of the first studies of Schumann’s late works.

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      • Struck, Michael. Die umstrittenen späten Instrumentalwerke Schumanns. Hamburg, Germany: Wagner, 1984.

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        Deliberately revisionist study of Schumann’s “controversial” late instrumental works. Includes detailed analyses of key pieces.

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      • Tadday, Ulrich, ed. Der späte Schumann. Musik-Konzepte Sonderband: Neue Folge 11. Munich: Edition Text + Kritik,2006.

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        This collection of essays in German considers the reputation of Schumann’s late works against a variety of backdrops: his earlier compositions, the aesthetic debates of the 1850s, performance issues and more recent responses to his music.

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      • Tunbridge, Laura. Schumann’s Late Style. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 2007.

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        An exploration of Schumann’s music from the 1850s, devoting chapters to each genre (songs, choral and orchestral works, chamber music, piano pieces) and to the composer’s collecting habits. Patterns in reception history and concepts of late style are discussed.

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      Analytical Studies

      There are analytical studies of particular works included in other sections; the ones here address broader theoretical issues. As in other sections there is an interest in the connection between music and literature (Daverio 1987, Newcomb 1987), how to interpret unorthodox structures (Roesner 1991, Lester 1994–1995) and harmonies (Mossburger 2005). There is also a focus on Schumann’s characteristic metrical experiments (Krebs 1999, Malin 2010).

      • Daverio, John. “‘Im Legendenton’ and Friedrich Schlegel’s ‘Arabeske.’” 19th-Century Music 11 (1987): 150–163.

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        Along with Newcomb 1987, marks Anglo-American interest in narrative theory. Focuses on the idea of Witz (wit) as a way to explain formal digressions in Schumann’s music. The focus on Schlegel has been criticized as anachronistic.

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      • Krebs, Harald. Fantasy Pieces: Metrical Dissonance in the Music of Robert Schumann. New York: Oxford University Press, 1999.

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        Award-winning monograph on Schumann’s approach to rhythm and meter. Includes a wide variety of examples. The “fantasy” aspect is played up by passages using the voices of Schumann’s fictional Davidsbund, meaning that analytical observations are paired with requests for extra slices of cake, and so on. A fascinating and influential study.

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      • Lester, Joel. “Robert Schumann and Sonata Forms.”19th-Century Music 18 (1994–1995): 189–210.

        DOI: 10.1525/ncm.1995.18.3.02a00020Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

        Argues against negative assessments of Schumann’s sonata form movements. Taking examples from the Toccata Op. 7, the Op. 11 Sonata, and the Op. 41:3 String Quartet, Lester explains Schumann’s more flexible structural approach.

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      • Malin, Yonatan. Songs in Motion: Rhythm and Meter in the German Lied. New York: Oxford University Press, 2010.

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        An innovative approach to song analysis centered on a theory of rhythm and meter, already shown to be crucial to Schumann’s music by Krebs 1999. As well as scattered examples from Schumann, it includes one chapter on songs from Dichterliebe. Reading the introductory chapters helps get the most out of the analyses.

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      • Mossburger, Hubert. “Poetische Harmonik” in der Musik Robert Schumanns. Sinzig, Germany: Studio, 2005.

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        Derived from the author’s doctoral thesis this study examines the poetic motivations behind Schumann’s use of harmony. It also compares his practice to his contemporaries.

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      • Newcomb, Anthony. “Schumann and Late Eighteenth-Century Narrative Strategies.” 19th-Century Music 11 (1987): 164–174.

        DOI: 10.1525/ncm.1987.11.2.02a00040Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

        Along with Daverio 1987, marks Anglo-American interest in narrative theory. Compares Schumann’s compositional practice to the formal strategies of novelist Jean Paul and Friedrich Schlegel, quibbling with Daverio over the significance of Witz (wit).

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      • Roesner, Linda Correll. “Schumann’s ‘Parallel’ Forms.” 19th-Century Music 14 (1991): 265–278.

        DOI: 10.1525/ncm.1991.14.3.02a00040Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

        Influential article on Schumann’s unorthodox approach to tonal functions and sonata form, and the experimental “parallel” forms of Opp. 14 and 17.

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      Performance

      The performance history of particular works is discussed in several citations. There are fewer dedicated studies. Brendel 2001 and Kapp 2006 concentrate on the difficulty of interpreting Schumann’s metronome markings. Roesner 1990 traces the relationship between editorial decisions and performance practice. Ferris 2002 and Appel and Wendt 2007 examine the composer’s relationships with specific performers, while Leech-Wilkinson 2009 uses early recordings for evidence of earlier practices. The oft-cited and challenging Barthes 1985 takes a more theoretical approach.

      • Appel, Bernhard R., and Matthias Wendt, eds. Robert Schumann, das Violoncello und die Cellisten seiner Zeit. Schumann Forschungen 11. Mainz, Germany: Schott, 2007.

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        Conference proceedings focused on Schumann’s cello music and cellists of his time. There are several contributions on performance practice.

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      • Barthes, Roland. The Responsibility of Forms: Critical Essays on Music, Art, and Representation. Translated by Richard Howard. New York: Hill and Wang 1985.

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        Includes translations of four often-cited essays on listening to and performing Schumann’s songs and piano music: “The Grain of the Voice,” “The Romantic Song,” “Loving Schumann,” and “Rasch.” Reprint, Berkeley: University of California Press, 1991. Originally published as L’obrie et l’obtus. Paris: Editions du seuil, 1982.

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      • Brendel, Alfred. “Testing the Grown-up Player: Schumann’s Kinderszenen.” In Alfred Brendel on Music: Collected Essays. By Alfred Brendel, 218–228. London: JR Books, 2001.

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        Famous pianist Brendel discusses the metronome marks for Schumann’s Kinderszenen and the work’s motivic connections. Originally published as “Der Interpret muss erwachsen sein. Zu Schumanns Kinderszenen,” Musica 35 (1981): 429–433.

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      • Ferris, David. “Public Performance and Private Understanding: Clara Wieck’s Concerts in Berlin.” Journal of the American Musicological Society 56 (2002): 351–408.

        DOI: 10.1525/jams.2003.56.2.351Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

        Discusses Schumann’s wife-to-be Clara Wieck’s repertory choices. Ferris explains that Schumann’s piano works from the 1830s were perceived to be too challenging for audiences. Also considers the importance placed on private performance by writers for the Neue Zeitschrift für Musik.

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      • Kapp, Reinhard. “Schumann spielen: Anmerkungen zur Wiedergabe der Kinderszenen im neuen Licht alter Metromozahlen und zum Spiel der Gesänge der Frühe.” Paper presented at a symposium held on 12–14 May 2006 at Universität Bremen. In Der späte Schumann. Edited by Ulrich Tadday, 87–115. Musik-Konzepte Sonderband: Neue Folge 11. Munich: Edition Text + Kritik, 2006.

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        Kapp has produced several articles on the challenge of interpreting Schumann’s metronome markings (a relatively new invention in his lifetime). This one focuses on Kinderszenen (also discussed by Brendel) and the less well known Gesänge der Frühe.

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      • Leech-Wilkinson, Daniel. The Changing Sound of Music: Approaches to the Study of Recorded Musical Performances. London: Centre for the History and Analysis of Recorded Music, 2009.

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        Recordings of Schumann’s piano music are among the case studies included here. Leech-Wilkinson analyzes the performances documented by recordings to glean insight into stylistic developments. Includes audio examples.

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      • Roesner, Linda C. “Brahms’s Editions of Schumann.” In Brahms Studies: Analytical and Historical Perspectives. Edited by George Bozarth, 251–282. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1990.

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        Focuses on Brahms’s early involvement in the creation of the Schumann Gesamtausgabe and the discussions he had with Clara about which works should be included. Provides insight into 19th-century Schumann reception and performance practice.

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      Reception

      There is increasing interest in the reception of Schumann’s music during and since his lifetime, within Germany (Todd 1994, Mahlert 2003) and in other countries (Bär 1998, Wendt 2005). There are studies of performances and criticism of the works; there are also studies of compositional responses to Schumann’s music, from the 19th to the 21st century (Williams 2006, Nonnenmann 2007).

      • Bär, Ute, ed. Robert Schumann und die französische Romantik. Schumann Forschungen 6. Mainz, Germany: Schott, 1998.

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        Proceedings from a conference on Schumann’s reception in France.

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      • Kok, Roe-Min, and Laura Tunbridge, eds. Rethinking Schumann. New York: Oxford University Press, 2011.

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        Includes several essays on Schumann’s reception in the 19th and 20th centuries, including his reputation in the Third Reich and representations of his life and music in ballet, films, novels, and recent compositions.

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      • Mahlert, Ulrich. Robert Schumann im Scheinwerferlicht nationalsozialistischer Ideologie. Bonn, Germany: Verein Schumannhaus Bonn, 2003.

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        Monograph on the reception of Schumann by the Nazis. Investigates the issues raised by attempts to appropriate Schumann’s music as a symbol for German artistic greatness.

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      • Nonnenmann, Rainer. “Die Gegenwart der Vergangenheit: die Musik Robert Schumanns in Komponierten Lesarten von Dieter Schnebel, Hans Zender und Henri Pousseur.” Musiktheorie: Zeitschrift für Musikwissenschaft 22 (2007): 153–175.

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        There are several individual studies of composer responses to Schumann. Nonnenmann takes a broader view, by comparing three figures (Schnebel, Zender, and Pousseur). Since 1960 composers have attempted to rediscover the “modern” aspects of Schumann’s music.

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      • Todd, R. Larry. Schumann and His World. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1994.

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        One of the most useful aspects of Todd’s volume is its inclusion of translations of German criticism and reminiscences from the 19th and early 20th century. There are essays by Franz Brendel, Adolf Schubring, Eduard Hanslick, and Franz Liszt, among others.

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      • Wendt, Matthias, ed. Robert und Clara Schumann und die nationalen Musikkulturen des 19. Jahrhunderts. Schumann Forschungen 9. Mainz, Germany: Scott, 2005.

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        There are several interesting contributions in this predominantly German-language volume on Schumann’s reputation within and outside of Germany. Marston looks at the British reception of Das Paradies und die Peri; Olga Lossewa considers Russian responses to the piano music, Heinrich Schwab ponders Schumann’s relationship with Danish composer Niels Gade.

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      • Williams, Alasdair. “Swaying with Schumann: Subjectivity and Tradition in Wolfgang Rihm’s Fremde Szenen I-III and Related Scores.” Music and Letters 87.3 (2006): 379–397.

        DOI: 10.1093/ml/gci234Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

        One of the few English-language examinations of Rihm’s response to Schumann, through the example of his chamber pieces Fremde Szenen.

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      LAST MODIFIED: 06/29/2011

      DOI: 10.1093/OBO/9780199757824-0067

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