"I recommend her book as an honest attempt to revive the topic of musical beauty, and to make both Boethius and Kant relevant to contemporary discussions of it."
Roger Scruton, British Journal of Aesthetics
"The book consists primarily of an impressive disentangling of the rationalist arguments of Boethius and Kant... Stone-Davis is compelling in her pursuit of re-enchantment within the world today, whereby the subject is rendered open to meaning derived from outside... Stone-Davis's proposal of a pre-reflective stance that can be differentiated from the cliched posturings of a "universal language's" solipsism or of the escapist highs of "beyond words" experience in aesthetic and religious expression alike is persuasive. Indeed, the negotiations she offers leave the reader longing for a musical beauty that may well contribute significantly to a healthy collaboration of music, philosophy, and theology."
Cheryl Pauls, Direction
"Stone-Davis' work is widely-researched, well-written, and intriguing in its engagement with two of the most influential figures in western aesthetic thought.... this book was overall a fascinating read."
Christina Larsen, Transpositions
"Musical Beauty is an interesting and original contribution to theological aesthetics."
Lancaster University, UK
"Here is a fresh and impressive new voice in the burgeoning conversation between music and theology. With considerable skill, Dr. Stone-Davis negotiates two of the most important figures in Western aesthetics. She emerges with striking proposals about the interrelation of beauty, physicality, and musical perception that have far-reaching consequences, affecting every aspect of the way we hear and listen to music in our own time."
Thomas A. Langford Research Professor of Theology, Duke University
"The philosophy of music is finally starting to emerge from the straitjacket imposed by the analytical tradition. Ferdia Stone-Davis' Musical Beauty makes a vital contribution to the growing realization that music is a resource for philosophical thinking, rather than simply an object to be defined by philosophy."
Professor of Philosophy and German
University of London
"Beauty leads to more than just pleasure. This elegant new study argues that it can reveal epistemological insights as well, and that musical beauty in particular can help us better understand our relationship to the world around us. As Stone-Davis argues, musical beauty is the most abstract, problematic, and, for that very reason, the most revealing of all varieties of beauty in art. She brings both historical and contemporary perspectives to this wide-ranging account."
--Mark Evan Bonds
Boshamer Distinguished Professor of Music
University of North Carolina