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Musicophilia: Tales of Music and the Brain.

MUSICOPHILIA: Tales of Music and the Brain OLIVER SACKS

A piece of music can compel us to move our bodies or move us to tears. How can a series of notes, strung together, have such a profound effect? And what can that experience tell us about the human brain? Author and physician Sacks explores the experience of music from the point of view of musicians, everyday people, and patients struggling with strange, music-related maladies. For instance, he describes a man who developed an overwhelming desire to compose music after being struck by lightning. Another patient developed a fear of music after certain pieces triggered seizures. A third patient lost memory for everything except music. Sacks describes a condition known as Williams' syndrome, whose sufferers are often endowed with extraordinary musical talent. In addition to focusing on pathologies, he explores everyday phenomena, such as music's ability to conjure up images and the annoying tendency for a musical phrase to sometimes stick in one's mind. Knopf, 2007, 381 p., hardcover, $26.00.

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Title Annotation:Books: A selection of new and notable books of scientific interest
Publication:Science News
Date:Nov 10, 2007
Words:172
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