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Music, Language, and Human Evolution - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Music, Language, and Human Evolution

Nicholas Bannan


Why do human beings make music? No human society has ever existed without music, and people all around the world commit considerable resources, including time, effort, and ingenuity, to musical participation and consumption. Yet until recently archaeology has had little to say about the possible role of music in human evolution. This book examines the potential role of musicality in human evolution and its consequences for human culture. Drawing on a growing body of research in archaeology, anthropology, psychology, and musicology, it illustrates the inter-disciplinary necessity of accounting ... More

Keywords: music, musical participation, consumption, human evolution, musicality, Charles Darwin

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2012 Print ISBN-13: 9780199227341
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2015 DOI:10.1093/acprof:osobl/9780199227341.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Nicholas Bannan, editor
Assistant Professor, School of Music, University of Western Australia.

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Part I Introduction

1 Introduction

Nicholas Bannan

Part II Perspectives from anthropology and archaeology

2 Music and Mosaics

Robert A. Foley

Part III Perspectives on the evolutionary prerequisites for musical behaviour

6 Vocal Traditions of the World

Trân Quang Hai and Nicholas Bannan

7 Found Objects in the Musical Practices of Hunter-Gatherers

Pedro Espi-Sanchis and Nicholas Bannan

Part IV Perspectives from social and cognitive psychology

Part V Perspectives from musicology

End Matter