From modern to future: Beethoven and us

  Beethoven, a man who once lived, a great man who speaks for the times, a genius who has invested his artistic and psychological activities in the distant future, and an idol that may cause a diametrically opposed group to worship together, is always able to motivate people. The heartstrings emit unexplainable overtones that are inexplicably exciting.
  The interpretation of Beethoven and his creations as a major cultural phenomenon began from the time he was alive (Beethoven knew this clearly, even tried to guide, and sometimes deliberately muddled the water), but with all history Like the great figures of, Beethoven is first of all a created and secondly called a creator. People often miscalculate or consciously misinterpret the results because they forget the premise. Because of this, after his death, there have been many variations around this “theme”: Among them, there are Beethoven of the nobles and Beethoven of the citizens, Beethoven of the Germanic nation and Beethoven of the French Revolution; with With the passage of time, there were Beethoven of Bismarck and Beethoven of Lenin. After the First World War, there were Beethoven of National Socialism and Beethoven of Soviet Communism; during the “Cold War”, there was Beethoven of East Germany. With Beethoven in West Germany, there were Beethoven in the West and Beethoven in the West after the end of the “Cold War”. In addition, there are Beethoven with musicians and Beethoven with intellectuals, Beethoven with classical music and Beethoven with pop music; in our country, there are Beethoven who think they understand Beethoven and those who think they cannot. Beethoven, who knows Beethoven…Beethoven is like an infinitely rich mineral deposit, which can be obtained by the extractors in a way of doing their best and distributing according to their needs; the depth of entry into this secret realm may be very different, but no one can monopolize it. And block it. Even if you don’t understand or don’t want to understand Beethoven, your life and environment are likely to be influenced by him, and it is difficult to get rid of this influence.
  We must realize that from the time of Beethoven to the present, a variety of emerging artistic styles and academic thoughts have constituted a huge power of ideas. Together with the material forces formed by the rapid changes in science and technology, ancient Europe has been shaped into In the modern West, ideology has never been more important for the West and the world it controls and influences. In the recent twentieth century, various ideological systems within the West that tried to continue to learn and promote peacefulness have competed for the right to interpret Beethoven. Starting from Beethoven, the serious publicity (sometimes even called religious) of music outside of entertainment, rituals and aesthetic activities became unavoidable, especially the redefined symphony in his hands. Genre has long become a purely spiritual and cultural phenomenon (although there are reasons to sneer at this “added value”). As a result, a kind of “serious music” appeared, not only for listening, but also for analysis and interpretation, but also for propaganda and agitation, and it was deeply integrated into the capitalist production and circulation mechanism. In certain political and popular cultures, Beethoven’s music (to be precise, some famous motives and melodies in his music), through radio, film, television, and the Internet, has already played the iconic symbols by sound. character of.
  But also in the West, when Beethoven’s legacy was canonized, the once consecrated Beethoven began to walk down the altar. In the eyes of researchers in the “Cold War” and “post-Cold War” eras, Beethoven is like a holy bone taken out of a dusty treasure box for many years, quickly separated from the already museumized packaging, and it is also like a famous emperor’s tomb. Seeing the sky, it was nothing but withered bones. The academic of deconstruction cannot dispel Beethoven’s significance to Western civilization, but it brings more possibilities for understanding. Through the reorganization of historical materials that have long existed but been neglected and the reassessment of many seemingly inevitable conclusions, we have discovered two different types of “Beethoven”: as a conceptual universal, it has always shaped the spirit The great man of history, and the German (mainly Vienna) who lived accidentally from 1770 to 1827, gave rise to a series of particulars that underpin this universal-we have tried to enumerate before- Ordinary people. The latter, as a concrete individual who has acted in daily life, often shows a departure from the conceptualized Beethoven. Understanding of this contradiction may completely cause a new conceptualization process.
  An interesting irony is: Although many of Beethoven’s “mid-term masterpieces” are considered to be highly popular and progressive, for a long time (including all his lifetime and most of the Biedermeier period), He is basically an artist who belongs to the circle of declining aristocrats and elites. The audiences of his important works are like Emperor Joseph II, who are inspired by the ideas of Enlightenment and are also afraid of Jacobin’s revolution. In addition to the monumental musical landmarks, Beethoven has also written many speculative works dedicated to the “reactionaries” like “The Victory of Wellington” and “The Hour of Glory”, and there are often some unconventional works. The active and disdainful ambivalence also reflects the character of his generation-just like Napoleon and Hegel of his age. For Haydn, Beethoven’s teacher, it is natural to extol authority (especially for a benevolent benefactor like Duke Esterhazy), but Beethoven always has doubts about this. Two different standards of right and wrong dominate the different mentalities between him and the teacher. He is happy to be rumored to be the illegitimate son of King Frederick, thinking that his own drunk father is not worthy to give birth to a son like himself; he dedicated the “Ninth Symphony”, which advocates one family and everyone equal, to Juncker The king of Prussia, the leader of the landlord, was first rejoiced by the latter’s gift of jewels, and then furious when he discovered that it was a worthless fake. As for his struggle for custody of his nephew, it is also a portrayal of the history of this mentality: an attempt to cultivate a newcomer with sound rationality and a noble personality in a crude way of feudal parents. From the perspective of the psychological changes of people in the drastic social transformation and the influence of various opposing concepts, all kinds of absurd rumors and anecdotes about Beethoven (some of which are actually caused by him) need to be taken seriously. Take it seriously.
  If you look more sympathetically, you can think that Beethoven (including the romantic generation afterwards) has a fierce confrontation between the habits of modern Europe and modern Western ideas. This tension has finally continued to the “Cold War”. Ending—After all, the decisive spiritual force since the Middle Ages is a mysterious religious passion that relies on the apocalypse, and the feudal society as its foundation is largely a primitive and closed agricultural civilization; after the emergence of the modern West , The city-centered social practice and intellectual activities led by rationalism have caused groundbreaking vibrations. The “Great Beethoven” inspired by the Enlightenment and the French Revolution unintentionally opened the magic box, blew the magic horn, and opened the spiritual world of adventure. This change is simple, vivid, powerful, pure, persistent, and youthful, just like the colorful slogans on the street. So after this, it is stability, stability that overwhelms everything. Both Beethoven and his two contemporaries agreed with an order that could last forever. Taking off the cloak of concept, many of his styles remind me of those men in “Song of Roland” and “Water Margin” who have not received modern education and live by instinct, although this kind of image is often affected by gender today. Equals’ attacks are like those sharp comments in Susan McClary’s “End of Feminine”.
  Once upon a time, the dogma aimed at subverting pre-modern virtues such as loyalty, piety and piety, and the rootless doctrine that aroused the deep worries of Leo Tolstoy and Maurice Barres, has also become a kind of trite. Principles that are constantly being eroded, just like the dreaming Innocent III in Giotto’s paintings and the immortal Marquis of suppression in “A Tale of Two Cities”. At this time, you go to listen to Beethoven again, whether it is “Symphony of Heroes” or “Victory of Wellington”, whether it is “Ode to Joy” or “Glorious Moment”, you will not feel how inconsistent they are.