Lecture: Leon Botstein: “The capital of Wagnerism: Richard Wagner and Jewish Vienna”
Leon Botstein talks about Wagner’s anti-Semitism and asks how unusual it was, why his attitude didn’t affect his popularity with the Jews, and how the case of Wagner can help us to understand the nature and persistence of anti-Semitism in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.
Leon Botstein has been President of Bard College, New York since 1975. He is musical director and conductor of the American Symphony Orchestra, founder and director of the Bard Music Festival, and conductor laureate of the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra. He has written many essays on musical history and as well as the books Judentum und Modernität (1991), Jefferson’s Children: Education and the Promise of American Culture (1997), and Von Beethoven zu Berg: Das Gedächtnis der Moderne (2013). He is also editor of The Compleat Brahms (1999) and Musical Quarterly, and co editor of Quasi una Fantasia: Juden und die Musikstadt Wien (2003).