When the Melody Takes a Detour, the Science Begins

Posted on July 10th, 2011 by

A NYTimes article reports on a recent World Science Conference on Music and Spontaneity when a panel of neuroscientists and musicians discussed the  “neurological processes underlying improvisation and what they tell us about human creativity and the structure of the brain”.

One may wonder whether the scientific study of music a worthwhile endeavor?  Or perhaps have a fear that such pursuits may demystify music?  One of the World Science Conference participants, Charles Limb, who is a neurologist and surgeon at Johns Hopkins, offers the opinion, “I don’t think in any way that music needs science,” but “music is a tool by which we can understand the brain” and the science of music “really teaches us something fundamental about who we are, why we’re here.”

On October 4 and 5,  the speakers invited to Nobel Conference 47 should  have more to say about what the science of music teaches us about “The Brain and Being Human”.


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