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  Universality and diversity in human song

Mehr, S. A., Singh, M., Knox, D., Ketter, D. M., Pickens-Jones, D., Atwood, S., et al. (2019). Universality and diversity in human song. Science, 366(6468): eaax0868. doi:10.1126/science.aax0868.

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Item Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0005-518E-0 Version Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0005-518F-F
Genre: Journal Article

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 Creators:
Mehr, Samuel A.1, 2, 3, Author
Singh, Manvir4, Author
Knox, Dean5, Author
Ketter, Daniel M.6, 7, Author
Pickens-Jones, Daniel8, Author
Atwood, S.2, Author
Lucas, Christopher9, Author
Jacoby, Nori10, Author              
Egner, Alena A.2, Author
Hopkins, Erin J.2, Author
Howard, Rhea M.2, Author
Hartshorne, Joshua K.11, Author
Jennings, Mariela V.11, Author
Simson, Jan2, 12, Author
Bainbridge, Constance M.2, Author
Pinker, Steven2, Author
O’Donnell, Timothy J.13, Author
Krasnow, Max M.2, Author
Glowacki, Luke14, Author
Affiliations:
1Data Science Initiative, Harvard University , Cambridge, MA 02138, USA, ou_persistent22              
2Department of Psychology, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA 02138, USA, ou_persistent22              
3School of Psychology, Victoria University of Wellington, Wellington, New Zealand, ou_persistent22              
4Department of Human Evolutionary Biology, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA 02138, USA, ou_persistent22              
5Department of Politics, Princeton University , Princeton, NJ 08544, USA, ou_persistent22              
6Eastman School of Music, University of Rochester, Rochester, NY 14604, USA, ou_persistent22              
7Department of Music, Missouri State University, Springfield, MO 65897, USA, ou_persistent22              
8Unaffiliated scholar, Portland, OR 97212, USA, ou_persistent22              
9Department of Political Science, Washington University, St. Louis, MO 63130, USA, ou_persistent22              
10Research Group Computational Auditory Perception, Max Planck Institute for Empirical Aesthetics, Max Planck Society, ou_3024247              
11Department of Psychology, Boston College , Chestnut Hill, MA 02467, USA, ou_persistent22              
12Department of Psychology, University of Konstanz, 78464 Konstanz, Germany, ou_persistent22              
13Department of Linguistics, McGill University, Montreal, QC H3A 1A7, Canada, ou_persistent22              
14Department of Anthropology, Pennsylvania State University, State College, PA 16802, USA, ou_persistent22              

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 Abstract: What is universal about music, and what varies? We built a corpus of ethnographic text on musical behavior from a representative sample of the world’s societies, as well as a discography of audio recordings. The ethnographic corpus reveals that music (including songs with words) appears in every society observed; that music varies along three dimensions (formality, arousal, religiosity), more within societies than across them; and that music is associated with certain behavioral contexts such as infant care, healing, dance, and love. The discography—analyzed through machine summaries, amateur and expert listener ratings, and manual transcriptions—reveals that acoustic features of songs predict their primary behavioral context; that tonality is widespread, perhaps universal; that music varies in rhythmic and melodic complexity; and that elements of melodies and rhythms found worldwide follow power laws.

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Language(s): eng - English
 Dates: 2019-03-012019-10-242019-11-22
 Publication Status: Published online
 Pages: -
 Publishing info: -
 Table of Contents: -
 Rev. Method: Peer
 Identifiers: DOI: 10.1126/science.aax0868
 Degree: -

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Title: Science
  Other : Science
Source Genre: Journal
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Publ. Info: Washington, D.C. : American Association for the Advancement of Science
Pages: - Volume / Issue: 366 (6468) Sequence Number: eaax0868 Start / End Page: - Identifier: ISSN: 0036-8075
CoNE: https://pure.mpg.de/cone/journals/resource/991042748276600_1