Viewing the last four hundred years of music history as a whole helps reconnect music to a wider understanding of the history of modernity. It allows us to explore the material relations between music and the sensibility of modernity, and to rethink music history not as a linear, chronological narrative of progression, but as a set of recurrent concerns. By reading across the usual periodizations of style history, this approach forces a rethinking of how we understand both older music and musical Modernism. From the decentering and disenchantment of the Renaissance world and the scientific revolution associated with Galileo, to the widespread sense of historical ending in the 1960s, music explores modernity not in terms of representation, but in the inward experience of time, space, and language.
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