about the Course

The great works of Western art music were not created in a vacuum; instead, they were mirrors that reflected their own times and places, each work in its own way.

We’ll be encountering and exploring eight such musical compositions, one per week, and discover how each emerged from, and commented on, its environment. From Bach’s “Cantata No. 140” — an expression of the intense Lutheran piety that threaded through German life—through Mozart’s Age-of-Revolution, “The Marriage of Figaro,” followed by compositions by Schubert, Schumann, and Brahms that expressed the Romantic temperament in all its kaleidoscopic variety, and ending with musical landmarks such as Stravinsky’s “The Rite of Spring,” Shostakovich’s “Fifth Symphony,” and Benjamin Britten’s “War Requiem,” we’ll explore music’s evolving role in our evolving culture.


Tuesdays, 10:00 - 11:30 AM.

Xavier Auditorium and overflow rooms

Alfred & Hanna Fromm Hall, 2130 Fulton Street, San Francisco.

Music as Mirror
winter Term, 2015


Course Outline