The End of Symphony and the Last Man (Shostakovich’s Fourth Sympony’s Anti-Utopia)

In this article, Shostakovich’s Fourth Symphony is treated as a musical illustration of the symphonic genre’s impossibility to be homologic to the trend that gave birth to it – the humanistic view about the world and man. In his Fourth – this is the thesis to be defended – Shostakovich, without destroying the symphonic model, by means of it and within it, suspends the symphonic ésprit, suspends Beethoven’s “Kingdom of God on Earth”, what Nietzsche calls “the gospel of overall harmony”.  In building symphonic anti-utopia, the model nested within it is the idea of coping, suffering, weeping, saying no, but also fighting, the last and hopeless one, for the primeval symphonic idea.

 

Keywords: Shostakovich, Shostakovich’s Fourth Symphony