Around the turn of the twentieth century, the music theory of Hugo Riemann enjoyed a brief surge of popularity in France. Prominent Debussyist critic Jean Marnold, however, devoted multiple lengthy articles to a denunciation and debunking of Riemann's theories, particularly the theory of undertones, between 1904 and 1906. This article explores the premises and motivations of Marnold's invective against Riemann and, concurrently, Marnold's relevance to understanding the relationship between scientific empiricism and musical discourse in the early twentieth century.

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