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Musical Forces


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Table of Contents

1. Introduction
I. A Theory of Musical Forces
2. Thinking about Music and Thinking in Music-Pattern, Meaning, Analogy, Metaphor, and Hierarchies
3. Something in the Way She Moves-The Metaphor of Musical Motion
4. Melodic Forces-Gravity, Magnetism, and Inertia
5. A Theory of Melodic Expectation
6. Rhythm, Meter, and Musical Forces
7. Analyses
II. Evidence for Musical Forces
8. Converging Evidence-An Introduction to Part Two
9. Evidence from Experiments in Visual-Perception and Neuroscience
10. Evidence from Compositions and Improvisations
11. Evidence from Music-Theoretical Misunderstandings
12. Evidence from a Listener-Judgment Experiment
13. Evidence from Comparing Computer Models With Production-Experiment Results
III. Conclusion
14. Summary and Prospects

Promotional Information

Details how and why music moves us

About the Author

Steve Larson (1955-2011) was the Robert M. Trotter Professor of Music at the University of Oregon and a member of its Institute of Cognitive and Decision Sciences. He was author of Analyzing Jazz: A Schenkerian Approach.


"Musical: Forces: Motion, Metaphor, and Meaning in Music will find a ready place in academic collections supporting study in advanced theory and musical cognition. It is well written, easy to understand, and full of good examples. The introduction by itself is a fine survey of the dialogue concerning musical meaning. By giving such an introduction, Larson's theories may well be understood as a part of an ongoing discussion."

* Music Reference Services Quarterly *

"It's hard to talk about music without using the language of motion. . . Steve Larson thoughtfully integrates several seemingly disparate disciplinary threads in music theory and cognitive science in an attempt to understand why we experience music this way. His account places three musical forces-gravity, magne- tism, and inertia-at the center of the explanation. April 2013"

* Music Perception *

"The potential benefits of Larson's theory of musical forces include a more explicit understanding of how we make meaning from musical experience, which in turn includes a richer understanding of the aspects of music cognition and metaphoric reasoning . . . ."

* Music Theory Online *

"One can read between the lines that the publication of this book was a labor-of-love for Editor Robert S. Hatten, who describes it as 'a fitting memorial to his (Steve Larson's) visionary ideas, his love of music, and his passion for sharing both.'August 2013"


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