Uncovering Western Art Music in the Twelfth-Century Troubadours

Prompt, Margot Fassler writes in Music in the Medieval West that “Whe male and female poet-composers of the twelfth century were more willing than their predecessors to describe inner emotional states in their writings and music. As a result, we can for the first time place some of the music we study in the context of individual live, (Fassler 121). The poet-composers of the troubadour community reveal a musical microcosm through their individual story-telling that shares much with many of the later musical communities we have observed throughout this course that can be characterized as that of a codified “Western art music.'” In the first part of your paper, discuss the dynamics of music-making in courtly life in the southern region of France in the eleventh- and twelfth-centuries, including a discussion of fin d’amors. Include a discussion of either Bernart de Ventadorn and Can vei la lauzeta mover, or Raimbaut de Vaqueiras. How are these artists and their works characteristic of a more traditional historical narrative of the life and motivations of a troubadour, In the second part of your paper, choose an issue we have discussed in this course (i.e. gender and representation/power, high-and low-brow art, connoisseurship vs. accessibility, class issues, etc.) as a frame to add more nuance 12 116 previous stereotypical narrative. Please incorporate a discussion of how courtly music of this time might be connected to 82128 21 the issues we have discussed in prior units. Your discussion should include specific works and/or composers as examples of this more nuanced reading of troubadour culture. You must back up your argument by citing sources from the reading above. Use no other sources.

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