The composer who should be loved instead of feared.

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Feb. 11 2002 6:16 PM

Tone Depth

The composer who should be loved instead of feared.

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For too long, Schoenberg has been held hostage by a small coterie of scholarly admirers. Their technical exegeses—their charts and schemata—have not served the composer well. He wrote music to be listened to, not analyzed. If we can manage to shake off their influence and simply hear what he has to say, Schoenberg might finally begin to enjoy the affection he deserves and always claimed to covet.

Erik Tarloff is the author of Face-Time and The Man Who Wrote the Book and is a member of Slate's book-reviewing team.

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