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Laments for a Modern World: Exploring the pathetic capabilities of 17th-century Laments

This thesis investigates the pathetic capabilities of the 17th-century vocal Lament. After first establishing an overview of the social and cultural conventions that influenced compositional choices, fourteen historic Laments from western Europe are analyzed to determine how they are able to evoke the feeling of grief. These pathetic elements are then applied to the composition of four new Laments for a Modern World, which couple 17th-century compositional techniques with newly commissioned texts that amplify stories including miscarriage, race-relations, displacement from one's homeland, and mental health.

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