Musicology Colloquium Lecture Series: Ayana Smith

Event Information
Event Date: 
December 7, 2018 - 4:00pm
Music Building, "Fishbowl" Room 0359
1114 W. Nevada, Urbana

The University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign Musicology Colloquium 2018-19 continues its series of distinguished lectures. Ayana Smith (Indiana University) will give a talk entitled "Fake News and False Images: Ocularcentrism and Operatic Culture in Seventeenth-Century Rome."

About the lecture:

In November of 1680, a Great Comet streaked across the sky, simultaneously fascinating and frightening observers across Europe, North America, and other “divers places beyond the seas.” Contemporary accounts of this “prodigious appearance” reflect much superstition, but also demonstrate emerging cultural rifts in accepting visual methods of empirical inquiry.

While scientific publications discussed ocular devices and mathematical calculations, popular pamphlets focused on astrology, prognostication, and religion. Whatever the tool, both sides debated the nature of visual observation. Images, both literal and figurative, became mechanisms of proof yet subject to disbelief. Smith's presentation will discuss several case studies, drawn from art, science, and music, including examples from George Frideric Handel (Il Trionfo del Tempo; Agrippina; and Semele) and Carlo Francesco Pollarolo (La forza della virtù).

Free Admission
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