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The Valkyrie: Page 431
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feeling, and not rise to consciousness as an action in the outer world.. Bruennhilde is to accomplish subliminally, through inspiration of art, what Siegmund attempted to accomplish outwardly in the morally conscientious claims he made upon his unreflective society. Morality demands that one take action in the real world, but art - what Wagner called a profound form of play - accomplishes this merely symbolically, without staking a claim upon the real world as religion and its morality does.

As Wotan demands to know whether Bruennhilde will take responsibility and acknowledge the justice of his complaint, and own her need to accept punishment, we hear #81 in a new form, which Dunning has designated #81B. #81A (which up until now I’ve merely designated as #81, since there was not yet any instance of #81B which needed to be distinguished from it), it will be recalled, is based on an earlier, softer, embryonic form of #21, the Spear Motif. Thus Wotan’s spear, engraved with the social contract, grounded in divine law, will punish Bruennhilde for breaking it. But what will really punish Bruennhilde is the fact that she cannot resolve the contradiction which is at the root of Wotan’s authority.

[V.3.2: B]

Bruennhilde now steps forward to takes what’s coming to her at Wotan’s hands:

(Bruennhilde emerges from the group of Valkyries and, humbly but with firm steps, descends from the top of the cliff, coming to a rest a short distance from Wotan. #81 frag or vari?)

 

Bruennhilde: Here I am, father, (#81B:) dictate my punishment (:#81B)! (#81B [low, heavy brass & strings])

 

Wotan: It is not for me to punish you: your punishment you yourself ordained. (#free varis and combinations of frags from #60:; #81Ab:; #83:; & #87:) Through my will alone you existed: but against me you have willed; my orders alone you carried out: but against me you have given orders; wish-maid you were to me: (#21 or #81?) but against me you have wished; (#21 or #81?) shield-maid you were to me; (#21 or #81?) but against me you have raised your shield; (#21 or #81?) chooser of lots you were to me: but against me you have chosen lots; inciter of heroes you were to me: (#21:; #60: [as heard during Siegmund’s desperate run through the storm in the prelude to V.1.1]) but against me you have incited heroes. (#81B in extended, loose vari on heavy brass [ending with a segment of #21 and a hint of #87]) (#19 bass line on trombones: [in the form of an interval falling from diminished 5th, to an augmented 4th, the “diabolus musica”]) What you once were Wotan has said to you: what you are now say to yourself (:#19 bass line on trombones)!

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