August Sheehy

August Sheehy is a Ph.D. candidate in Music History and Theory at the University of Chicago in the United States, where he is advised by Professors Thomas Christensen and Berthold Hoeckner. He is a recipient of a Deutscher Akademischer Austausch Dienst graduate research grant for 2013–2014 and currently lives in Berlin. While in Germany, August is conducting research for his dissertation, “Music Analysis as a Practice of the Self, 1831–1947.” The dissertation, historically bookended by the publication of Gottfried Weber's well-known analysis of the introduction to Mozart's "Dissonance" string quartet and Arnold Schönberg's "Brahms der Fortschrittliche," investigates the role of individual practice in the development of music theory as a distinctly modern discipline. Its four case studies—on Weber, Adolf Bernhard Marx, August Halm, and a double study on Heinrich Schenker and Arnold Schönberg—examine the specific historical and personal contexts of analysis in order to determine why individuals took up and developed practices of analysis, why they were attracted to specific composers’ music, and why their practices took specific forms. The guiding thesis is that music analysis operates in nineteenth-century and early twentieth-century German contexts as a mediating practice between musical subjectivity and subjectivizing institutions such as law, education, religion, and history.