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Music can be a source of auditory pleasure or even entertainment, but also a cultural or philosophical reflection couched in sound, a means to expand sensibilities and open new emotional and sensory horizons in the listener’s perception. The enjoyment of familiar kinds of music accordingly increases with the possibility of extending this enjoyment to more recent, novel manifestations. It is not a matter of choosing between them or setting one against the other. Rather, we should see all varieties of music, from its origins to the present day, as a cultural product that people have practiced for their own fulfilment as sensitive, intelligent beings. The essential goal of this publication is to integrate within it the latest chapters in the musical art.
This book is intended as an aid to listening to the music of the 20th and 21st centuries, which is considered thematically rather than resorting to the customary linear history of the music of the period. Each of its six chapters examines the most significant milestones in these centuries from a series of standpoints, with the authors featured serving as an illustrative reference to broader currents, aesthetics and techniques.