Essay question 1: discussion

Even though [the newsreel images] showed the naked obscenity, the physical deterioration, the grim destruction of death, the images, in fact, were silent. Not merely because they were filmed without live sound recording, which was standard practice at the time. They were silent, above all, because they said nothing precise about the reality they showed, because they delivered confused scraps of meaning… (Jorge Semprún, L’écriture ou la vie [Paris: Gallimard ,1994])

Why do you think sound was so important for Semprún in giving life to representations of the Holocaust? What light do these claims made for sound, both during and after the Holocaust, cast on our understanding of music and music making during this period?

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4 Comments

Filed under Essay discussion

4 responses to “Essay question 1: discussion

  1. Ian Biddle

    Dear students: please feel free to leave any queries about this essay question here. I’ll answer as quickly as I can.

  2. Titus English

    [please note: this comment is now out of date and was posted in relation to the 2012-13 delivery of this module; please check any advice given here against the latest version of the module documentation]

    if possible, because i haven’t actually found it yet, could you tell me which page of literature or life this quote is from???

    • Ian Biddle

      [please note: this comment is now out of date and was posted in relation to the 2012-13 delivery of this module; please check any advice given here against the latest version of the module documentation]

      Hello Titus. The full reference is as follows: Jorge Semprún, Literature or Life, trans. Linda Cloverdale (New York: Viking, 1997) 200-1.

      • Ian Biddle

        [please note: this comment is now out of date and was posted in relation to the 2012-13 delivery of this module; please check any advice given here against the latest version of the module documentation]

        Probably clearer if you put: 200-201 for the page range, by the way. 🙂

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