The Last of the Titans
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Richard Wagner by Joachim Kohler
Book DescriptionIn this new biography of Richard Wagner, Joachim Kohler draws on social and political analysis, documentary interpretation, and psychological insights to paint a rounded picture of Wagner as both a controversial historical phenomenon and a complex human being. Kohler's reading of the letters, diaries, and other documents of the main protagonists, some of them unfamiliar even to seasoned Wagnerians, results in some breathtaking but convincing reappraisals. He examines Wagner's love affairs with Jessie Laussot, Mathilde Wesendonck, and Judith Gautier and assesses their lasting emotional effect. He re-evaluates Wagner's relationships with his mother, step-father, sister, and--most revealingly--his wife, Cosima, a relationship seen as based on fear rather than love. Kohler explores the philosophical roots of Wagner's work, which the composer himself deliberately obfuscated. And he analyzes Wagner's relationship with King Ludwig, whom Wagner is revealed to have blackmailed, and with Nietzsche, whom he tried to destroy. The traumas of his youth haunted Wagner throughout his life, as his emotional development underlay his notorious anti-semitism. Kohler's interpretation of Wagner's dreams, as recorded in Cosima's diaries, offers astonishing insights into the paranoia and insecurity of a man who was one of the leading composers of his age.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780300104226
(235mm x 156mm x 58mm)
Imprint: Yale University Press
Publisher: Yale University Press
Publish Date: 5-Oct-2004
Country of Publication: United States
Books By Author Joachim Kohler
Zarathustra's Secret, Hardback (April 2002)
In this groundbreaking biography, Kohler seeks for the first tiime to understand Nietzsche's philosophy through a reconstruction of his inner life. In a revealing reinterpretation of his letters, diaries and writings, Kohler shows that Nietzsche's suppressed homosexuality was a central influence on his work.
Wagner's Hitler, Paperback (August 2001)View all books by Joachim Kohler
* A controversial new examination of the relationship between Wagner and Hitler* Traces Wagner's influence on Hitler from his youth to his dictatorship* Has generated a great deal of debate in Germany and is sure to do so in the English-speaking world. .
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Author Biography - Joachim Kohler
Joachim Kohler is the author of Nietzsche and Wagner: A Lesson in Subjugation, and Zarathustra's Secret: The Interior Life of Friedrich Nietzsche, both published by Yale University Press. He is also the author of Wagner's Hitler. Stewart Spencer is editor of The Selected Letters of Richard Wagner, Wagner's Ring, and Wagner Remembered.
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