James Gibbons Huneker (1860–1921)

American music critic and writer. Huneker was teaching piano at the National Conservatory of Music in New York during Dvořák’s tenure at the school. He was of a somewhat eccentric character, which is also reflected in his books. His “scandalous” recollections of Dvořák published in a volume of memoirs entitled Steeplejack earned him the reputation as Dvořák’s critic and enemy. Huneker’s views on Dvořák’s music, in fact, oscillated between admiration and dismissal. He considered the composer’s early compositions to be his best works, while he did not accept Dvořák’s theory on African American music as the foundation for an American national school of music.