Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “On Late Style: Music and Literature Against the Grain” as Want to Read:
On Late Style: Music and Literature Against the Grain
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

On Late Style: Music and Literature Against the Grain

3.83 of 5 stars 3.83  ·  rating details  ·  131 ratings  ·  11 reviews
In this fascinating book, Edward Said looks at the creative contradictions that often mark the late works of literary and musical artists. Said shows how the approaching death of an artist can make its way into his work, examining essays, poems, novels, films, and operas by such artists as Beethoven, Genet, Mozart, Lampedusa, Euripides, Cavafy, and Mann, among others. He u ...more
Paperback, 208 pages
Published April 10th 2007 by Vintage (first published April 11th 2006)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about On Late Style, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about On Late Style

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 381)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
John David
Edward Said, perhaps best known for “Orientalism,” one of the most-recognized and important contributions to post-colonial studies, wrote the essays in “On Late Style” shortly before his death. The sense of “lateness” – of mortality, of obsolescence – permeates them, and they cover everything from the music of Strauss, Mozart, and Beethoven, to the political activism of Jean Genet, to “Il Gattopardo” (as envisioned by both Lampedusa and Visconti). In many ways, this is Said’s last conversation w ...more
Mark
From 2010 reading:I first read Said's On Late Style a few years ago, and returned to re-read it in light of some more recent publications. What is "lateness", as Said defines it? "Lateness" as a concept is not necessarily restricted to an artists's late compositions, but is rather a condition. Said challenges earlier definitions of lateness that focus on maturity and serenity, preferring rather to focus on style characterized by "intransigence, difficulty, and unresolved contradiction". Said tak ...more
Lobstergirl
Oct 01, 2012 Lobstergirl rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Lingerie League refs
Shelves: music
"Lateness" is an interesting prism through which to critically view an artist's works. I'm more familiar with lateness in Beethoven - the way the late piano sonatas, for example, are structurally, thematically, quite odd and different compared to the others. Maturity, senescence, decay, approaching death. (Death in Venice, which Said uses as one of his examples, is actually not a late work of Mann's, but the Britten opera based on it is a late work of Britten's.) These are separate essays previo ...more
Lorraine
I was initially unimpressed -- waiting for the 'oomph' which exists in essays by Adorno and company -- and not finding it. But this collection is remarkably lucid, and definitely worth a read based on its interesting ideas and its emphasis on belatedness. It was very very late night reading for me, so I'm afraid I can't do it justice -- but I was determined to give Mozart a try, after reading his essay on Cosi Fan Tutte. The essay on Glenn Gould is, too, an incredible piece I think, with many ob ...more
سعاد العنزي


It is as sam a as Said's valuable books, and I think we need to apply this great notion of lateness in our cultural productions in order to examine them profoundly by asking how books, or other sorts of culture's productions reflect our time and place's issues in one sense. From another side, we have to investigate the validity of the works of the the writers who write at the late of their life inconsistently with their own previous work in terms of style, structure of the work, and themes as we
...more
Night RPM
For me, this is the seminal text of the last decade, on criticism. The best thing about it? No need to read Adorno to brush up on the late style theory. After reading this book, you will want to lose yourself in the late Mozart operas, Richard Strauss, Cavafy, Glenn Gould recordings, di Lampedusa, Jean Genet, etc. etc. etc. ....
Rob
said's elegy to adorno and himself. a couple of beautiful essays on glenn gould and adorno's concept of late style. feels a bit patched together because it was, as said didn't finish it before he died.
jordan
The chapter on Genet is the most helpful to my work; for the other chapters I was just along for the [have to take your word for it] ride.
Ed
Disappointing work that is bitty and not a really coherent set of insights.
Jessie
The last chapter was definitely my favorite
Jeev
A reminder of what we have lost.
Fosa
Fosa marked it as to-read
Feb 26, 2015
Nuha
Nuha marked it as to-read
Feb 26, 2015
Ering
Ering marked it as to-read
Feb 20, 2015
Ivy Tsai
Ivy Tsai is currently reading it
Feb 15, 2015
Christian Bowe
Christian Bowe marked it as to-read
Feb 15, 2015
Jesse Baer
Jesse Baer marked it as to-read
Feb 07, 2015
Amr
Amr marked it as to-read
Feb 05, 2015
Flowers
Flowers marked it as to-read
Feb 02, 2015
Ben
Ben marked it as to-read
Jan 31, 2015
Brian Erich Kepple
Brian Erich Kepple marked it as to-read
Jan 29, 2015
Lotfia
Lotfia marked it as to-read
Jan 29, 2015
KC
KC marked it as to-read
Jan 25, 2015
Scholar
Scholar marked it as to-read
Jan 18, 2015
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 12 13 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • The Romantic Generation (The Charles Eliot Norton Lectures)
  • Noise: The Political Economy of Music
  • Johannes Brahms: A Biography
  • Style and Idea: Selected Writings
  • In The Break: The Aesthetics Of The Black Radical Tradition
  • The Unanswered Question: Six Talks at Harvard (Charles Eliot Norton Lectures) (The Charles Eliot Norton Lectures)
  • A Natural History of the Piano: The Instrument, the Music, the Musicians--from Mozart to Modern Jazz and Everything in Between
  • Prisms
  • The Historical Novel
  • Poetics of Music in the Form of Six Lessons
  • Where the Stress Falls: Essays
  • Time and Narrative, Volume 2
  • The Great Animal Orchestra: Finding the Origins of Music in the World's Wild Places
  • Problems of Dostoevsky's Poetics
  • Marginalia: Readers Writing in Books
  • Reinventing Bach
  • K.
  • The Last Holiday
24390
(Arabic profile: إدوارد سعيد)

Edward W. Said was born in Jerusalem and raised in Egypt until his parents sent him to the United States in 1951.

Said graduated from Princeton University in 1957 and earned his Ph.D. from Harvard University in 1964.

He was a professor of English and Comparative Literature at Columbia University in New York and held his chair until his death at 67. His major interests w
...more
More about Edward W. Said...
Orientalism Culture and Imperialism Out of Place Covering Islam: How the Media and the Experts Determine How We See the Rest of the World The Question of Palestine

Share This Book