The World in Six Songs

Paperback $16.00

Jul 28, 2009 | 368 Pages

Ebook $12.99

Aug 19, 2008 | 368 Pages

Audiobook Download $17.50

Aug 19, 2008 | 373 Minutes | Young Adult

  • Paperback $16.00

    Jul 28, 2009 | 368 Pages

  • Ebook $12.99

    Aug 19, 2008 | 368 Pages

Buy the Audiobook Download:

Get the news you want from Penguin Random House


“A must-read. . .A literary, poetic, scientific, and musical treat.”
Seattle Times

“An exemplary mix of scientist and artist, student and teacher, performer and listener.”
Library Journal, starred review

“A fantastic ride.”
New Scientist

“Leading researchers in music cognition are already singing its praises.”
Evolutionary Psychology

Table Of Contents

The World in Six SongsChapter 1: Taking It from the Top or “The Hills Are Alive . . .”

Music and poetry. The two uniquely human components of the music brain.

Chapter 2: Friendship or “War (What Is It Good For)?”

Social bonding, synchronous coordinated movement, the evolution of emotional bonding, protest music for group cohesion.

Chapter 3: Joy or “Sometimes You Feel Like a Nut”

The first song. Neurochemical effects of music and music therapy.

Chapter 4: Comfort or “Before There Was Prozac, There Was You”

Why we listen to sad music when we’re sad. Lullabyes and the blues. (And a short story about depressed restaurant workers pushed to the edge by a happy song.)

Chapter 5: Knowledge or “I Need to Know”

Music as an information-bearing medium. Learning, memory, and oral histories.

Chapter 6: Religion or “People Get Ready”

The role of music and ritual in creating order, reducing ambiguity, and commemorating important times and events.

Chapter 7: Love or “Bring ‘Em All In”

The sense of hearing and the prefrontal cortex. Tools, musical instruments, and shaping the environment. The evolution of social structure.


Product Details

Back to Top