Dissertation Index

Author: Wile, Kip, D.

Title: A Study of Collection in Neocentric Music

Institution: University of Chicago

Begun: October 1989

Completed: August 1994


This dissertation examines major analytical approaches to the body of music that, to adopt Arthur Berger's classification, is "centric but not [necessarily] tonally functional." I take as the focus of my study the concept of "collection" (i.e., octatonic, diatonic, whole-tone, hexatonic, chromatic, and other large referential sets). The critical component of the dissertation therefore evaluates the approaches of such writers as Babbitt, Forte, Perle, Antokoletz, Berger, van den Toorn, Parks, Baker, Straus, and Taruskin. Proceeding by means of the various underlying aspects of collection, I also propose a conceptual framework through which the attributes of collections may be precisely described. The chapters of the dissertation, which progress from smaller- to larger-scale issues, thus embrace such fundamental topics as coherence, membership, centricity, hierarchy, succession, interaction, and various means by which collections participate in global structure. The conceptual framework developed in these chapters is illustrated through analysis of works by such composers as Debussy, Stravinsky, Scriabin, Ravel, and Bartok.

Keywords: collection, set, neocentric, centricity, tonality, Debussy, Stravinsky, Scriabin, Ravel, Bartok


Introduction; Chapter 1: The Coherence of Collections; Chapter 2: Membership; Chapter 3: Centricity and Hierarchy; Chapter 4: Communication; Chapter 5: Interaction; Chapter 6: Stasis; Chapter 7: Composing out;
Chapter 8: The Characteristic Setting


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