Friday, February 17, 2012

Dr. Alessandra Comini & Alma Mahler

Yesterday at Baylor University, Dr. Alessandra Comini gave an insightful lecture on Alma Mahler and Her Vienna.  Two facts from the life of Alma caught my attention.  First, Gustav Mahler required that Alma stop composing music.  Second, Gustav required that Alma discard her collection of the Nietzsche before he would marry her.

I suspect that Gustav's disdain for Nietzsche derived from Nietzsche's harsh criticisms of Wagner.  But, Gustav's rejection of Nietzsche reveals a curious parallel between them.  As Alma Schindler Mahler was the femme fatale and muse of Mahler, Gropius, and Werfel, Lou Andrea Salome was the femme fatale and muse of Nietzsche, Rilke, and Freud.  When the marriage of Alma and Gustav faltered, Gustav employed the counsel of Sigmund Freud who advised Gustav to encourage Alma to return to composing music.
Lou Andrea Salome
Alma Mahler

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