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Title:Ralph Vaughan Williams and the pastoral mode
Author(s):Ross, Ryan
Director of Research:Magee, Gayle Sherwood
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Sherwood Magee, Gayle
Doctoral Committee Member(s):Bashford, Christina; Kinderman, William A.; Temperley, Nicholas
Department / Program:Music
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Ralph Vaughan Williams
English Music
20th Century Music
Abstract:The music of Ralph Vaughan Williams (1872-1958) has often been associated with a pastoral mode of expression. While scholars have begun exploring this relationship in projects of limited focus, an extended study has not yet been undertaken. This dissertation is the first such study. It examines ways in which Vaughan Williams and his music have demonstrable points of contact with the pastoral mode, emphasizing the role that literature and personal experience played in influencing this part of his imagination. The first chapter explores the term “pastoral” itself, its use in Western literature and music, and how all of these factors relate to Vaughan Williams and English culture. Subsequent chapters consider a selection of the composer’s activities, convictions, and compositions, and discuss them in light of significant pastoral influences. Through such case studies, this dissertation demonstrates that Vaughan Williams’s use of the pastoral mode was not only more complex and multi-layered than has previously been understood, but it was also a major attribute of his originality and a key ingredient in his artistic engagement with the contemporary world.
Issue Date:2012-06-27
Rights Information:Copyright 2012 Ryan Ross
Date Available in IDEALS:2012-06-27
Date Deposited:2012-05

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