Brain and Mind: Music and the Brain (St Hilda's College)

music and the brain free Scalable Vector Graphic

Three expert speakers will each give a talk on the subject of Brain and Mind: Music and the Brain at the next in the popular Brain and Mind series of research seminars.

We look forward to welcoming and hearing from Professor Eric Clarke, Heather Professor of Music, University of Oxford, Dr Victoria Bajo, Associate Professor of Neuroscience, University of Oxford, and Professor Nick Zangwill, Honorary Research Fellow, University College London. There will then be a chaired discussion, with questions from the audience.

This event will be virtual. Attendance is free and everyone is welcome but please register in advance for Music and the Brain here.  


Beyond the brain: music across brain, body and world by Professor Eric Clarke

Abstract: There has been striking and exciting progress in the neuroscience of music over the last 25 years or more, as brain scanning methods themselves have become more sophisticated and more readily available to researchers. But there is a danger in thinking of the experience of music as being confined to the brain. A proper consideration of the rest of the body, and the body’s own entanglement with the extraordinary variety of musical environments that we inhabit, are just as integral to the powerful experiences that music affords. In this talk I offer an outline of what a more distributed and less brain-bound approach might offer, and a view of music as a ‘technology of the self’, and a tool for flourishing from the cradle to the grave.

Speaker Biography: Eric Clarke is Heather Professor of Music at the University of Oxford, and a Professorial  Fellow of Wadham College. He has published on a variety of topics in the psychology of music, ecological approaches to music perception, musical meaning, music and consciousness, musical creativity, and the analysis of pop music. Recent projects include work on music, empathy and cultural understanding; and empirical and historical approaches to the performance of C19th orchestral and chamber music. His books include Empirical Musicology (OUP 2004, with Nicholas Cook), Ways of Listening (OUP 2005), Music and Mind in Everyday Life (OUP 2010, with Nicola Dibben and Stephanie Pitts), Music and Consciousness (OUP 2011, with David Clarke), Distributed Creativity: Collaboration and Improvisation in Contemporary Music (OUP 2017, with Mark Doffman), and Music and Consciousness 2: Worlds, Practices, Modalities (OUP 2019, with Ruth Herbert and David Clarke). He was is a member of Academia Europaea, and a Fellow of the British Academy.

Suggested Reading: Clarke, E. F. (2005) Ways of Listening. An Ecological Approach to the Perception of Musical Meaning. New York: Oxford University Press; Clarke, E. F., Dibben, N. and Pitts, S. (2010) Music and Mind in Everyday Life. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2010.

MORE INFO: Dr Anita Avramides