This is Your Brain on Music: Understanding a Human Obsession

This is Your Brain on Music: Understanding a Human Obsession


By (author) Daniel J. Levitin

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Paperback $11.08
  • Publisher: ATLANTIC BOOKS
  • Format: Hardback | 320 pages
  • Dimensions: 167mm x 250mm x 34mm | 656g
  • Publication date: 9 August 2007
  • Publication City/Country: London
  • ISBN 10: 1843547155
  • ISBN 13: 9781843547150
  • Illustrations note: b&w diagrams
  • Sales rank: 309,096

Product description

This is the first book to offer a comprehensive explanation of how humans experience music and to unravel the mystery of our perennial love affair with it. Using musical examples from Bach to The Beatles, he reveals the role of music in human evolution, shows how our musical preferences begin to form even before we are born and explains why music can offer such an emotional experience. Levitin demonstrates how composers exploit the way our brains make sense of the world in order to manipulate our reactions to their music and insists that despite our cultural distinction between an expert class of performers and everyone else, that we are more musically equipped than we think: we are in fact hardwired for music. Music is an obsession at the heart of human nature, even more fundamental to our species than language. In "This is Your Brain on Music Levitin" offers nothing less than a new way to unlock the mysteries of the human brain.

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Author information

Daniel J. Levitin runs the Laboratory for Musical Perception, Cognition, and Expertise at McGill University, where he holds the Bell Chair in Psychology of Electronic Communication. Before becoming a neuroscientist, he was a session musician, sound engineer and record producer. He has written extensively for scientific journals and music trade magazines.

Review quote

"'A dissection of music perception and creation that inexorably builds to a grand finish. Despite illuminating a lot of what goes on with music this book doesn't "spoil" enjoyment - it only deepens the beautiful mystery that is music.' David Byrne, Talking Heads 'Endlessly stimulating' Oliver Sacks"