Music and Law: Law in Lyrical Operas. Gianni Schicchi by Giacomo Puccini. The Harmony of the System
Just like in case of dramas, novels and works of art in general, music can be used to nourish that living and experimental law that, in a given context, is effectively in force.
From the point of view of the content of their libretto, lyrical operas are very interesting for the study of law in literature, but the music of lyrical operas takes preeminence and importance due to its emotional strength and expressive power.
The matter, as Roberto Vacca states in his Diritto Sperimentale, is alive and close to reality, and in lyrical operas there is no escape for sociological, psychological and moral observations that can escape a jurist’s or a law philosopher’s attention. Law often dominates on the opera stage and fascinates due to its capacity to inoculate that artist’s knowledge that colours itself with juridical elements: the opera raises the curtain to the world of law and lets it venture in its own extraordinary world. This paper is based on the analysis of Gianni Schicchi by G. Puccini, the last panel of the triptyque which includes Il Tabarro and Suor Angelica.
The succession law is often the subject matter of narrative or drama works: Gianni Schicchi deals with the theme of Buoso Donati’s opening of succession, the episode cited by Dante Alighieri in The Divine Comedy, in canto XXX of Inferno. It belongs to the Italian opera buffa genre and was first performed at the Metropolitan Opera in New York on 14 December 1918 and was an immediate success. The source is a short episode in which the protagonist is instructing a false will. The work outlines with great precision the climate and environment of the Medieval Florence: the references to the succession law make it possible to carry out a historical comparative analysis with the entities currently in force. The writing theme aptly conveys semantic meanings that perfectly match the score which deals with the theme of human greed that contrasts both macabre and necessary call for a punishment according to the law.
- Alpa G (1996) L’arte di giudicare. Laterza, Roma-BariGoogle Scholar
- Carnelutti F (1949) Arte del diritto. CEDAM, PadovaGoogle Scholar
- Cogliolo P (1891) Filosofia del diritto. Barbera, FirenzeGoogle Scholar
- D’Amato A (1936) La letteratura e la vita del Diritto. Saggi, Ubezzi & Dons, MilanoGoogle Scholar
- Facio A (1998) The law: an art or a science? J Gender Social Policy Law 7:355–358Google Scholar
- Fehr H (1931) Das Recht in der Dichtung. A. Francke AG Verlag, BernGoogle Scholar
- Fehr H (1936) Die Dichtung in Recht. A. Francke AG Verlag, BernGoogle Scholar
- Fitzgerald LS (1986–1987) Towards a modern art of law. Yale Law J 96:2051–2081Google Scholar
- Grossi P (1986) La fantasia nel diritto. In: Quaderni fiorentini, 15. Giuffrè, MilanoGoogle Scholar
- Grossi P (2002) Il diritto tra norma e applicazione. Il ruolo del giurista nell’attuale società italiana. Prolusione tenuta nella cerimonia inaugurale della Scuola di Specializzazione per le professioni legali di FirenzeGoogle Scholar
- Janhkélévitch V (1998) La musica e l’ineffabile. Bompiani, MilanoGoogle Scholar
- Janhkélévitch V, Berlowitz B (1978) Quelque part dans l’inachevé. Gallimard, ParisGoogle Scholar
- Nussbaum M (1996) Il giudizio del poeta. Feltrinelli, MilanoGoogle Scholar
- Panuccio V (1984) La fantasia nel diritto. Giuffrè, MilanoGoogle Scholar
- Pugliatti S (1940) L’interpretazione musicale. Messina, Secolo nostroGoogle Scholar
- Resta G. Variazioni comparatistiche sul tema: “Diritto e musica”. www.comparazionedirittocivile.it
- Stolleis M (2007) L’occhio della legge. Carocci, RomaGoogle Scholar
- Tumiati L (1927) La poesia nel diritto. Rivista internazionale di filosofia del diritto III:216–272Google Scholar
- White HC (1898–1899) Education in the art of practicing law. West Reserve Law J 4:195Google Scholar