This book explores the relationships between language, music, and the brain by pursuing four key themes and the crosstalk among them: song and dance as a bridge between music and language; multiple levels of structure from brain to behavior to culture; the semantics of internal and external worlds and the role of emotion; and the evolution and development of language. The book offers specially commissioned expositions of current research accessible both to experts across disciplines and to non-experts. These chapters provide the background for reports by groups of specialists that chart current controversies and future directions of research on each theme.
The book looks beyond mere auditory experience, probing the embodiment that links speech to gesture and music to dance. The study of the brains of monkeys and songbirds illuminates hypotheses on the evolution of brain mechanisms that support music and language, while the study of infants calibrates the developmental timetable of their capacities. The result is a unique book that will interest any reader seeking to learn more about language or music and will appeal especially to readers intrigued by the relationships of language and music with each other and with the brain.
Contributors: Francisco Aboitiz, Michael A. Arbib, Annabel J. Cohen, Ian Cross, Peter Ford Dominey, W. Tecumseh Fitch, Leonardo Fogassi, Jonathan Fritz, Thomas Fritz, Peter Hagoort, John Halle, Henkjan Honing, Atsushi Iriki, Petr Janata, Erich Jarvis, Stefan Koelsch, Gina Kuperberg, D. Robert Ladd, Fred Lerdahl, Stephen C. Levinson, Jerome Lewis, Katja Liebal, Jônatas Manzolli, Bjorn Merker, Lawrence M. Parsons, Aniruddh D. Patel, Isabelle Peretz, David Poeppel, Josef P. Rauschecker, Nikki Rickard, Klaus Scherer, Gottfried Schlaug, Uwe Seifert, Mark Steedman, Dietrich Stout, Francesca Stregapede, Sharon Thompson-Schill, Laurel Trainor, Sandra E. Trehub, Paul Verschure
About the Editor
Michael A. Arbib is University Professor, Fletcher Jones Professor of Computer Science, and Professor of Biological Sciences, Biomedical Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Neuroscience, and Psychology at the University of Southern California. He is the author or editor of many books, including The Handbook of Brain Theory and Neural Networks (MIT Press, second edition 2002).
“This is an important collection of scholarly articles, large in scope but perfectly focused. The effort seems devoted to countering its subtitle. After reading it, you will discover that the relationships of language, music, and the brain are far less mysterious than they were when you began. This is no small accomplishment, and Michael Arbib and his colleagues deserve to be congratulated.”
—Antonio Damasio, University Professor, David Dornsife Professor of Neuroscience, and Director, Brain and Creativity Institute, University of Southern California; author of Descartes' Error, The Feeling of What Happens, Looking for Spinoza, and Self Comes to Mind