Laura Shannon Prize Winner

Calico Arnold Schoenberg Survivor From Warsaw In Postwar Europe

Publisher: University of California Press

Publication Year: 2014

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Arnold Schoenberg’s “A Survivor from Warsaw” in Postwar Europe

by Joy H. Calico

2016 Silver Medalist in Humanities

Jury Statement (Honorable Mention)

Joy H. Calico examines the cultural history of postwar Europe through the lens of the performance and reception of Arnold Schoenberg’s A Survivor from Warsaw—a short but powerful work, she argues, capable of irritating every exposed nerve in postwar Europe. Schoenberg, a Jewish composer whose oeuvre had been one of the Nazis’ prime exemplars of entartete (degenerate) music, immigrated to the United States and became an American citizen. Both admired and reviled as a pioneer of dodecaphony, he wrote this twelve-tone piece about the Holocaust in three languages for an American audience. This book investigates the meanings attached to the work as it circulated through Europe during the early Cold War in a kind of symbolic musical remigration, focusing on six case studies: West Germany, Austria, Norway, East Germany, Poland, and Czechoslovakia. Each case is unique, informed by individual geopolitical concerns, but this analysis also reveals common themes in anxieties about musical modernism, Holocaust memory and culpability, the coexistence of Jews and former Nazis, anti-Semitism, dislocation, and the presence of occupying forces on both sides of the Cold War divide.

Final Jury

Karl Ameriks
McMahon-Hank Professor of Philosophy, Emeritus
University of Notre Dame

John E. Hare
Noah Porter Professor of Philosophical Theology
Yale Divinity School, Yale University

Anne Lake Prescott
Senior Scholar and Emerita Helen Goodhart Altschul Professor of English
Barnard College, Columbia University

Ingrid Rowland
Professor of Architecture
University of Notre Dame Rome Global Gateway, University of Notre Dame

Roger Scruton
Senior Fellow, Ethics & Public Policy Center in Washington, D.C.