.
book book
Home awards catalogs newsletter calendar resources exam about
.



Search the Site
.


Enter keywords, ISBN, author, or book title

 
.
Search the Site

Art
Art
College Planning
Education and Teaching
Language and Literature
Foriegn Language Instruction
Performing Arts
Reference
Science and Mathematics
Social Studies
Test Prep
Writer's Workshop

Search the Site
.


Sign-up for the High School Newsletter:
   

.
Search the Site

.

online catalog --
--
title info
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
BEHIND THE BOOK
READ AN EXCERPT
order this title
ordering info for teachers
--
Email this Page
Print this Page
Search Again
--
Temperament
How Music Became a Battleground for the Great Minds of Western Civilization
Written by Stuart Isacoff

Temperament
Enlarge View
.

Category: Music - Musical Instruments - Piano & Keyboard; Music - History & Criticism
Imprint: Vintage
Format: Trade Paperback
Pub Date: February 2003
Price: $16.00
Can. Price: $19.00
ISBN: 978-0-375-70330-0 (0-375-70330-6)
Pages: 288
Also available as an eBook.



 
Few music lovers realize that the arrangement of notes on today’s pianos was once regarded as a crime against God and nature, or that such legendary thinkers as Pythagoras, Plato, da Vinci, Galileo, Kepler, Descartes, Newton and Rousseau played a role in the controversy. Indeed, from the time of the Ancient Greeks through the eras of Renaissance scientists and Enlightenment philosophers, the relationship between the notes of the musical scale was seen as a key to the very nature of the universe.

In this engaging and accessible account, Stuart Isacoff leads us through the battles over that scale, placing them in the context of quarrels in the worlds of art, philosophy, religion, politics and science. The contentious adoption of the modern tuning system known as equal temperament called into question beliefs that had lasted nearly two millenia—and also made possible the music of Beethoven, Schubert, Chopin, Debussy, and all who followed. Filled with original insights, fascinating anecdotes, and portraits of some of the greatest geniuses of all time, Temperament is that rare book that will delight the novice and expert alike.


“Isacoff... untangles the complexities... with the aplomb of a virtuoso pianist playing scales.” —The New York Times Book Review

“Admirable.... [Isacoff] writes engagingly.... [about] a time when there existed a glorious synthesis of music and mathematics, and in the imaginations of scientists and philosophers and musicians it wove the entire universe into a grand design." —The New Republic

“Charming.... As much a whirlwind tour of Western culture’s big ideas as it is a musicological investigation.” —Los Angeles Times

“A sweeping history of medieval and Renaissance European intellectual achievement, in which the question of tuning assumes a speaking part.... Temperament should appeal not only to music lovers but also to fans of cultural and scientific history.” —Time Out New York

“An astounding and accessible journey through the culture-defining narrative hidden in arcane music theory. Isacoff does a wondrous job.” —The Onion

“[Brings] together aspects of science, philosophy, history, poetry, religion, and music in a compact yet compelling narrative.” —Library Journal



ABOUT THE AUTHOR

 
Stuart Isacoff, a recipient of the ASCAP Deems Taylor Award for excellence in writing about music, is a pianist, lecturer, composer, and the creator and editor in chief of the country’s largest-circulation classical piano magazine, Piano Today. He has contributed to The New Grove Dictionary of American Music and has written for the New York Times. He lives in Bergen County, New Jersey.


From the Hardcover edition.





.
.
.
.
.
.