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Chopin and His World$
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Jonathan D. Bellman and Halina Goldberg

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780691177755

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691177755.001.0001

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Józef Sikorski’s “Recollection of Chopin”: The Earliest Essay on Chopin and His Music

Józef Sikorski’s “Recollection of Chopin”: The Earliest Essay on Chopin and His Music

(p.45) Józef Sikorski’s “Recollection of Chopin”: The Earliest Essay on Chopin and His Music
Chopin and His World
John Comber

Halina Goldberg

Princeton University Press

This chapter focuses on “Recollection of Chopin” by Józef Sikorski, the earliest extended essay on the composer's life and works. The author's emotional language captures the immediacy and poignancy of the response to the news of Chopin's death in the composer's Warsaw circles. A close reading, however, also reveals striking similarities between Sikorski's effusive prose and the overlapping metaphoric vocabularies of German Idealism and Polish political messianism: the figurative language is deployed to locate Chopin and his artistic achievement within these two philosophical frameworks. Moreover, Sikorski was among the first critics to offer perceptive analytical observations on Chopin's compositional strategies and his innovative musical language.

Keywords:   Recollection of Chopin, Józef Sikorski, Fryderyk Chopin, Warsaw circles, German Idealism, Polish political messianism, musical language

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