Sacrificial form: the libretti in English 1940-2000

Mai, Chih-Yuan (2008) Sacrificial form: the libretti in English 1940-2000. PhD thesis, University of Glasgow.

Full text available as:
[thumbnail of 2008maiphd.pdf] PDF
Download (1MB)
Printed Thesis Information:


This thesis focuses on the genre of libretto, the sung words for music theatre. The “little book” which accompanies every operatic performance is not just an extended program note to the spectacle, but in fact a substantial literary form in its own right. However, despite the immense influence of Wagner, the output from librettists in an operatic collaboration, has been serious ignored; indeed in opera the aesthetic function of language is frequently diminished and foreshortened, because it is often re-directed by and within the music. The result is that librettists are often seen as offering words to be “decomposed” by composers in the process of operatic collaboration.
Opera, in the English language, finally achieved its rightful status, alongside its European counterparts, during the second half of the twentieth century. The thesis is intended to encompass something of the vast diversity of this genre and discusses a number of individual works as constituting legitimate literary artefacts in their own right. There will be five chapters featured in the thesis and each chapter is devoting to a specific theme.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Qualification Level: Doctoral
Additional Information:
Keywords: Literature, Music, Opera, Libretti, Sacrifice
Subjects: P Language and Literature > PS American literature
M Music and Books on Music > ML Literature of music
B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BL Religion
P Language and Literature > PR English literature
Colleges/Schools: College of Arts & Humanities > School of Critical Studies > English Literature
Supervisor's Name: O'Brien, Mr Des
Date of Award: 2008
Depositing User: Mr Chih-Yuan Mai
Unique ID: glathesis:2008-437
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 30 Oct 2008
Last Modified: 10 Dec 2012 13:18

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item


Downloads per month over past year