idée fixe

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The squawking of the Eb clarinet, the beating with the wood of their bows by the violins and violas, the screeching glissandos in the woodwinds, and the dramatic changes in dynamics turn the idee fixe into a grotesque image of its former self.
Monomania's relationship to the idea of progress in the nineteenth century could turn the idee fixe into a symbol of both scientific and artistic advancement.
Whereas some prominent breeders, most notably the Aga Khan, prefer to ring the changes as a matter of routine, rarely repeating a mating, Martin and Pam Wygod's policy with Tranquility Lake has been that of the idee fixe.
Many look behind it, however, from snobbery, mischievousness, or the thrall of an idee fixe, seeking another Shakespeare than the one it presents.
As Marina Van Zuylen's introduction reminds us, 'monomania' came from Pinel and Esquirol, his pupil, in the early nineteenth century, and from the psychiatrist Etienne-Jean Georget; it was associated with the idee fixe, and it could act as a synonym for melancholy.
Consider Columbus, who made a huge miscalculation about the dimensions of the earth but who was driven by the idee fixe, and as a result discovered America--by accident.
The perception of Africa as a corrupt continent--whether rightly or wrongly earned--has now become such an idee fixe in the rest of the world, that such a decisive gesture against such a highly-placed politician speaks volumes for the continent's determination to change this perception.
In the late 1960s and early 1970s, as the baby boom generation inserted itself into the life of the mind in Western Europe and America, it became an idee fixe that the Enlightenment had given birth to a number of the most odious characteristics of Western civilization: wanton imperialism, capitalism, ecological depredation.
When we offer a pragmatic explanation of someone's belief, presenting it as, say, a wishful thought or idee fixe, then we will have different expectations of her doxastic behavior.
Among the neoconservative thinkers who hold sway in the present administration, one current idee fixe is the dream not merely of eradicating Islamic terrorism but of transforming Islam itself.
His White House has instead been dominated by the idee fixe of tax cuts, and it simply can't find the money for such preventive international measures.
But if one isn't a conservative by the time one is 30, there is something wrong with one's head" Rove was a born political conservative and with him it was an idee fixe.