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The evocative lyrics and blurry aesthetics of the national
Nasello, Michaela LoMonaco
Thomas, Joseph T., Jr
Edson, LaurieSmigel, Eric
The lyrics of American indie band The National give listeners an incomplete work of poetry, where gaps in lyrical meaning invite listeners to interpret individually and communally and musicality of language and instrumentation elicit particular emotions, sensations, and memories. An analysis of the aesthetic experiences evoked by The National’s music, framed in the contemplations of Gaston Bachelard and Stanley Fish, this project incorporates the specific responses of dozens of listeners to compare and contrast the endless number of meanings that the music conjures and exemplifies songs by similarly regarded artists, Bruce Springsteen and Bob Dylan, to explore the ways in which The National favors the oblique over the concrete, how their creative choices consequently affect listeners, and how each listener’s experience helps to construct meaning.
Arts and Letters
San Diego State University
Master of Arts (M.A.) San Diego State University, 2019
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