The Wound That Will Never Heal (Paul Brian Heise)

Paul Brian Heise has published a new book that may interest Wagnerites - The Wound that will Never Heal - An allegorical Interpretation of Richard Wagner’s The Ring of the Nibelung. It is a study of the entirety of Wagner’s Ring and his employment of musical motifs to enhance its meaning.

By comprehensively assessing the Ring’s drama and music — rather than cherry-picking portions of it — this approach reveals the Ring’s underlying allegory, a new vision of its ‘meaning’ that calls for the wholesale revision of our received conception of it.

The Wound that will Never Heal demonstrates that Wagner’s allegory narrates how music-dramatist Wagner (Siegfried and his muse of inspiration Brünnhilde) inherited dying religious faith’s (Wotan’s) longing for redemption when faith was threatened by science’s (Dark-Alberich’s, and Wotan’s [Light-Alberich’s]) accumulation of a hoard of objective knowledge.

It reveals the Ring as Wagner’s master-myth — the key to understanding all of his canonical artworks from the The Flying Dutchman to Parsifal.

The study provides an annotated guide to the Ring’s musical motifs (193), indicates every instance in context, and identifies their initial and definitive occurrences. It also contains dozens of original insights into the influence of anti-Semitism, Greek myth, Christianity, and Ludwig Feuerbach’s atheism upon the Ring, and presents a thorough assessment of Wagner’s related writings and recorded remarks for comprehending the Ring.

$59.95 Hardcover ($10.00 surcharge for foreign delivery)