The Rise of Intellect in Wagner's Ring


In lieu of an abstract, the first paragraph of the essay follows:

When Brünnhilde argues with her master in Die Walküre II.ii, Wotan makes an angry attempt to silence her:

Was hist du, als meines Willens

blind wählende Kür?-1

From the orchestra the horns, bassoons, and lower strings make fortissimo pronouncement of the emphatic motif associated with Wotan's spear, the symbol of his authority. The god is attempting to assert control over the daughter, best loved of the nine, who calls herself his ''will" (Wille).

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