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Jacques Offenbach and the Paris of His Time
 
 
Author
Siegfried Kracauer. Gertrud Koch, foreword.
Publisher Zone Books  
Format hardcover
Product Dimensions 9.25 x 6.25 x 1.4 inches
ISBN 9781890951306
Pages/Publication Date 418/2002
Daedalus Item Code 32369
This item is not available.
Description
First published in German in 1937, Siegfried Kracauer's biography of Jacques Offenbach (1819–1880) uses the life and work of the German-born French composer as a focal point for a broad and penetrating portrayal of Second Empire Paris. Offenbach's immensely popular operettas have long been understood as part of the historical amnesia and escapism that pervaded Paris under Napoleon III, but Kracauer insists that Offenbach's productions are more than glittering distractions. The fantasy realms of such operettas as La Belle Hélène and The Tales of Hoffmann made a mockery of the pomp and pretense surrounding the apparatuses of power.

"The appeal of the book lies in Kracauer's dazzling portrait of the gas-lit Parisian beau monde of dandies, courtesans, dissolute journalists, snobbish aristocrats, insecure bourgeois, elegant salons and riotous street carnivals, all rendered with a flowing style and witty, novelistic detail. Offenbach's operettas ... are evocative symbols of a glamorous, music-mad world that the author vaguely disapproved of but can't help loving anyway."—Library Journal

 
 
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