Writing Assignment #2: The Medial Caesura

This assignment differs from WA#1. It is a true research assignment in that it asks you to read recent literature on the topic of tonal forms and respond intelligently.


WARNING: This is a long assignment and will take more time to prepare. Manage your time accordingly.

1.     Article reading

Read James Hepokoski and Warren Darcy's "The Medial Caesura" article posted with this assignment on Blackboard. You may skim the sections on Schenkerian theory (their interest in the Zug and Kopfton are only supplemental and not a vital component of Sonata Theory, especially for our purposes). I expect you to be very familiar with the six examples given in the reading. If a concept seems unclear, check the examples! _


2.     Analysis

Take a close look at Example 4 in the text. You will notice that Hepokoski and Darcy have not annotated their scores. Please bring in an annotated score of this example (Haydn's String Quartet, Op. 33, no. 2 ("Joke"), i: mm. 12-32). Notice that I am asking for a few more measures than in the article. A copy of the score is attached to this assignment.

a.     Your first annotated score will mark Hepokoski and Darcy's interpretation of this passage. Although the authors have not provided a labeling system, I expect your score to be clearly marked with Roman numerals, cadences, and any and all appropriate formal labels (such as medial caesura, P, TR, S, C, caesura fill, etc.).


3.     Written Supplement

Provide a 250-300 word analytical statement and reaction. Your statement must include a

consideration of Hepokoski and Darcy's article.

-       Your arguments must be intelligent and scholarly.

-       Do not tell me what you "like" or think is "weird."

-       Instead, consider how convincing (or unconvincing) you find the arguments in the article.

-       Think about the possibilities that Sonata Theory holds in theories of tonal forms. Construct a coherent argument that defends your position.

-       You may also use part of your statement to discuss your annotated score(s).



Ensure ease of readability of text by adhering to double-spacing between lines, single spaces after periods, 12-point Times New Roman or Helvetica fonts, and please conserve paper by printing on both sides.

a.     Bring to class three (3) packets consisting of the following, stapled together:

1)    a copy of your paper

2)    a photocopy of your analyses (retain your original)

3)    a blank copy of the rubric


b.     Upload to Blackboard, under "WA and Comp File Deposit," a PDF copy of your 1) rough draft (by the due date), and 2) final draft (by the due date).



Writing Mechanics

Presentation of Ideas

Form Analysis

Harmonic Analysis

A (90-100%)

Flawless SWE; understands scholarly style*; engaging pacing

Presents key concepts clearly; original insight conveyed

Identifies all formal labels according to lecture slides

Identifies all 1st level chords; interprets 2nd level function conclusively

B (80-89%)

Flawless SWE; scholarly style misunderstood

Conveys information clearly; little or no original insight

Identifies most formal labels according lecture slides

Identifies most 1st level sonorities; misinterprets 2nd level

C (70-79%)

SWE suffers

twice per page; no scholarly style present; pacing confused

Misgiven on some key concepts

Engages few formal labels; cadences incorrect

Accurately identifies some 1st level harmonies

D (60-69%)

SWE suffers three to five times per page

Misunderstands the concepts

Most formal labels missing or incorrect; cadences missing

Harmonic analysis is sparse

F (59%)

SWE suffers more than five times per page

Does not understand the concepts

formal is wholly missing or incorrect; cadences missing

Harmonic analysis is nonexistent

**If you are unsure about how to write in North American scholarly style (or, even if you think you know), pick up the latest copy of Music Theory Spectrum, the Journal of Music Theory, or the Journal of the American Musicological Society and imitate faithfully.