Plunged in thought: Thomas Bernhard on Music

An excerpt from Thomas Bernhard's novel, Correction
Austrian writer Thomas Bernhard stands barefoot at the door to his home
Thomas Bernhard
From Thomas Bernhard's Correction, translated by Sophie Wilkins:
[...] for even at the age of eleven or twelve Roithamer had instinctively perceived that music and the knowledge of music was a necessary condition for his ability to enter into the natural sciences, and so he had even then seized upon every opportunity to improve his knowledge of music and, with only that basic instruction in musical theory and practice and in piano playing, he had achieved a mastery of his subject all on his own, and had not only retained that mastery all his life but had even managed to expand and intensify it. Listening to music had always meant the same to him as studying music, so listening to music was for him not only a way of raising his spirits but, by the way he combined hearing and studying the music, he became plunged in thought. While others listen to music and, when they hear, they feel it, it was possible for Roithamer to hear music and to feel and to think and to study his science. His chief musical interest had been, on the one hand, Purcell and Handel and Mozart and Bruckner, and on the other hand, the newer and newest music such as Hauer, Webern, Schönberg and their successors. The opening bars of the Webern string quartet which he'd hand-copied on the back of a bill, he'd tacked on the wall above his desk in Hoeller's garret. He loved this opening, it had always meant much to him.