Exploring Musical Narratology


The Romeo and Juliet Myth in Music

Małgorzata Pawłowska

August 15, 2018

356 pp.


SKU: 9378-1-20-1-16-1-10-2-16-14-3-1-12-6-11-1-1-1-6-3 Categories: ,


The story of Romeo and Juliet, because of its reach, meaning, content, and structure, carries all the characteristics of a modern myth. Even though it is almost exclusively associated with Shakespeare, the legend as such had featured in the oral tradition and in various epic forms long before Shakespeare’s times.


Exploring Musical Narratology: The Romeo and Juliet Myth in Music discusses the problem of narrativity in works of music based on the example of the myth of Romeo and Juliet, presented here in a broad cultural context. The book reflects the author’s interest in two subject matters: on the one hand, the ways in which the Romeo and Juliet myth features in the history of music and, on the other hand, the question whether the category of narrative can be useful in researching music. The study also tackles the theme of the semantics of love and hate in music.


Investigating the functioning of the Romeo and Juliet theme in the history of music, with reference to Shakespeare’s text, can point us toward the similarities and differences between literary and musical narratives, and provide the basis for an attempt to define the changes that have taken place in musical narrative throughout the ages.


Małgorzata Pawłowska: