Exams in Basel. Jacques Handschin’s Correspondence with Gustav Reese, Karl-Allan Moberg and Heinrich Besseler


In a letter to Russian Swiss Jacques Handschin dated 7.10.1937, young American musicologist Gustav Reese expressed his wish to become Handschin’s student and to defend his thesis in Basel. Based on Handschin’s academic correspondence, the article comments on Reese’s proposal and discusses possible reasons for Handschin’s refusal. Reese’s request and Handschin’s letters are taken as examples for the interaction between American and West European musicological schools in the second quarter of the twentieth century.