Biomusicology: Neurophysiological, Neuropsychological, and Evolutionary Perspectives on the Origins and Purposes of Music

Biomusicology: Neurophysiological, Neuropsychological, and Evolutionary Perspectives on the Origins and Purposes of Music

Biomusicology: Neurophysiological, Neuropsychological, and Evolutionary Perspectives on the Origins and Purposes of Music

Biomusicology: Neurophysiological, Neuropsychological, and Evolutionary Perspectives on the Origins and Purposes of Music

Synopsis

"Since the 1960s, Swedish musicologist Nils Wallin has been exploring man's biological inheritance and its relationship to music. This book, the culmination of these many years of investigation, offers a musicological interpretation of recent research in neurophysiology and paleobiology. A model of music as a natural system which serves as a foundation for the understanding of our musical mind, its capacity, and its phylogenetic roots is proposed. And a unified bio-socio-cultural field theory of music is presented. It is here argued that music "creates" structures which develop and grow in a manner not unlike the processes controlling the growth of organisms. Thus, music as a system is conditioned by biological microsystems, as well as superior macrosystems of a more complex nature, such as the flow of consciousness and social, political, and economic systems: a natural synergetic system. Wallin's discourse encompasses: 1) the musical consequences of cerebral functional asymmetry; 2) the hierarchic and selective organization of perceptual-cognitive auditory processes; 3) reticular-limbic responses to musical stimuli interpreted as synapse-modifying mechanisms for long-term motivation and learning, as well as for phylogenetical "learning"; 4) the question of remnants or retentions with roots in the sound-gestures of other vertebrates of a higher order (and not solely the non-human primates) being active in the innermost structure of music; 5) vocalization techniques, e.g., the "kolning" technique of the late Paleolithic herding culture of Europe, as paleobiological retention; 6) the epistemological perspective of models of life-processes as discussed in recent scientific research." Title Summary field provided by Blackwell North America, Inc. All Rights Reserved

Excerpt

A problem which has followed Homo sapiens throughout history is that of the composition and localization of the mind, including the question of its very existence. Presently, the relevance and intensity of this discussion is greater than ever--models have been developed as a result of recent insights into the various aspects of biology, as they relate to both the natural and human sciences. In the second part of this book we will return to this enormously dynamic field--not "beyond reductionism" (Koestler), but between an essentially reductionistic way of treating certain problems and the simultaneous (and not contradictory) recognition of holistic and synergic views and values. Here we shall concentrate on a condensed picture of major trends in current brain research concerning the localization of perceptual, cognitive, and emotive functions in the two halves of the brain.

HISTORICAL BACKGROUND

Before proceeding, an examination of historical data will prove useful. For further study I recommend the accounts given by two neurophysiologists that, although of different generations, are . . .

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.