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College of Arts Humanities and Social Sciences, Lamont School of Music, Musicology and Ethnomusicology


Music, Richard Strauss, Nazi party, Propaganda, Composition


Richard Strauss was one of the most influential German composers in the first half of the 20th century. His relationship with the Nazi Party has been a topic of debate among musicologists and historians for some time and the question of whether Strauss attempted to resist the regime through his work remains. Strauss’s opera Friedenstag has garnered much of this debate as it can be seen as either a piece of propaganda or a piece of pacifist resistance. Given the reach of the Nazi propaganda machine, there is little question that Strauss would have been influenced by it. This paper will examine the effect of Nazi propaganda on Strauss and the influence it had on the composition of his opera Friedenstag.

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