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Music as Message

Asa Briggs, 23 May 1991

The World of the Oratorio 
by Kurt Pahlen.
Scolar, 357 pp., £27.50, February 1991, 0 85967 866 0
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The Making of the Victorian Organ 
by Nicholas Thistlethwaite.
Cambridge, 584 pp., £50, December 1990, 0 521 34345 3
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... the hypocrisy of culture, like other cast-off fashions, finds its last asylum among the poor.’ Pahlen, in his large-scale work of reference, claiming to present a whole world to his readers, has extraordinarily little to say about such matters, or about changes in 19th-century tastes, although he offers a short section called ‘historical and other ...

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