Marjorie W. Hirsch, Music

Class of 1924 Professor of Music, Emerita

“Love delights in wandering.”

That line, which your first subject of study, Franz Schubert, set to music in 1827, describes so well your spirit as an educator, two centuries later. 

Your scholarship on Schubert is magisterial in scope and profound in its depth. To cite just one example, your co-edited guide to his work, Winterreise, encompasses everything from studies of the composer’s political and cultural milieu, to an analysis of the psychology and science of the era to your expert musicological and textual analysis.

This adventurousness is energized by your deep love for music and teaching. As one former student says, “What I remember… is her kindness and quiet but enduring enthusiasm for everything she taught. Of all the courses I took at Williams, hers were the ones that were pure pleasure for me…. Thank you for the gift of music, which has sustained me through the joys and sorrows of my life.”

Among music majors and non-musicians alike, in courses on everything from Mozart and Beethoven to “Hearing through Seeing” and “Dangerous Music,” and through your prolific publishing on German Romanticism, musical storytelling and myth, your love for your studies has been a gift, leading so many students on the most delightful wanderings. 

I hereby declare you Class of 1924 Professor of Music, Emerita, entitled to all the rights, honors and privileges appertaining thereto.

June 2, 2024