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The Musical Mind: The Cognitive Psychology of Music

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In this survey of our current knowledge concerning the cognitive psychology of music, the author--a psychologist and practicing musician--examines the mental processes involved in composing, performing, listening to, and "understanding" music, and shows how such skills are acquired.


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In this survey of our current knowledge concerning the cognitive psychology of music, the author--a psychologist and practicing musician--examines the mental processes involved in composing, performing, listening to, and "understanding" music, and shows how such skills are acquired.

30 review for The Musical Mind: The Cognitive Psychology of Music

  1. 5 out of 5

    Simon Mcleish

    Originally published on my blog here in May 1998. This is a really excellent book for anyone interested in how the mind perceives and understands music. As the author points out, most of the literature in this area is either written by psychologists who are not musicians, or by musicians with no background in psychology. John Sloboda is unusual in being both a musician and a psychologist, teaching the piano as well as being a professor of psychology. The fact that he is involved in both fields me Originally published on my blog here in May 1998. This is a really excellent book for anyone interested in how the mind perceives and understands music. As the author points out, most of the literature in this area is either written by psychologists who are not musicians, or by musicians with no background in psychology. John Sloboda is unusual in being both a musician and a psychologist, teaching the piano as well as being a professor of psychology. The fact that he is involved in both fields means that he avoids the trap of missing the parts of the musical experience which are important to the musician that the psychologists often fall into - particularly when they are devising experiments. He can also avoid the complementary trap of devising explanations of musical phenomena which are psychologically discredited which musicians often fall into. The book covers current research in just about every area you could imagine, from musical education to composing and improvising to pitch, rhythm and musical structure perception and understanding. Sloboda also suggests areas where more research is needed. This is a thought provoking book, and one to which I am sure I will return again and again.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Marco Klein

    Sloboda has put together a comprehensive outline of psychological aspects (mainly cognitive) that apply to the perception and production of music. With his academic background and his experience as practicing musician, his description is at the same time critically scientific and musical. The structure of the book is well organised, and the chapter topics lead well into the next. A certain degree of musical understanding is required to follow his excursion (e.g. building arguments on the concept Sloboda has put together a comprehensive outline of psychological aspects (mainly cognitive) that apply to the perception and production of music. With his academic background and his experience as practicing musician, his description is at the same time critically scientific and musical. The structure of the book is well organised, and the chapter topics lead well into the next. A certain degree of musical understanding is required to follow his excursion (e.g. building arguments on the concept of circle of fifths without explicitly explaining it), but that shouldn’t put anyone off reading this rather recent, yet still relevant book. If your goal is to make connections between psychology and music, then this book will certainly help you on your way.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Christopher Heckman

    Not so much a book to read straight through. I really only read chapters 2, 4, and 5.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Andrew Herbert

    This book is about 30 years old (depending on what printing you get). Nonetheless, it serves as an excellent primer on the importance of music in human thinking. Sloboda summarized a lot of research and musicology in this book. Thus, it's a nice starting point for working through what we've learned since "The Musical Mind" was published.

  5. 4 out of 5

    robert

    Although the original edition of this book is from about 1983, it's an excellent introduction to approaches to cognitive science and music--even if you're not into cognitive science, the way Sloboda looks at the brain looking at music should prove interesting to anyone who thinks about music as a profession.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Wilson Silva

    Livro interessante do Sloboda, mas é um tanto técnico. Se você não tem um aprofundamento musical, fica difícil compreender muitas passagens (e olha que estudei música e ainda assim "patinei" em muitos momentos do livro).

  7. 4 out of 5

    W. Zinn

  8. 5 out of 5

    Nugunn Wattanapat

  9. 4 out of 5

    Irene

  10. 4 out of 5

    Dana Devlieger

  11. 5 out of 5

    Mariapaola Vessichelli

  12. 4 out of 5

    David

  13. 5 out of 5

    Kate

  14. 5 out of 5

    LPenting

  15. 5 out of 5

    James

  16. 4 out of 5

    Caroline

  17. 4 out of 5

    Shiuli Maity

  18. 5 out of 5

    Andrew

  19. 5 out of 5

    Juan Tobon

  20. 5 out of 5

    Fabiano Lemos

  21. 5 out of 5

    Vanja Scepanovic

  22. 5 out of 5

    Manic

  23. 5 out of 5

    RazorBurn

  24. 4 out of 5

    Alice Ho

  25. 4 out of 5

    Trevor

  26. 5 out of 5

    Dirk

  27. 4 out of 5

    Jessica

  28. 5 out of 5

    Jérémie Vrielynck Privé

  29. 5 out of 5

    Renne Sairanen

  30. 5 out of 5

    Serena Cappellini

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