Summary: The Influence Of Music

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Music is one of human’s greatest creations. It is an important aspect of human life as it can be used to unite people from different backgrounds and cultures (Rachiotis,2014). Music is used by children when doing their homework, by adults at work when completing a variety of tasks and by university students when studying for an upcoming examination. According to Karthigeyan (n.d) music, in general, plays a powerful social role in assisting communication (O’Donnell et al., 1999), influencing cognitive functioning (Rauscher, Shaw & Ky, 1993), stimulating deep emotions (Juslin & Sloboda), and influencing the establishment and maintenance of social groups (Hargreaves & North, 1997). This indicates that people use music as a stimulant for brain…show more content…
Music has been perceived to have transcendental qualities and has thus been used pervasively within forms of religious worship (Lefevre, 2004). Plato and Aristotle both advised music as a from of treatment for debilitated patients. Plato suggested both music and dancing for people with anxiety and for people who were scared while Aristotle believed that music was a form of medical treatment to restore one to their full health (Gallant & Holosko, 1997). Humans have therefore suspected that music had physical and emotional benefits throughout history.
Many studies have been done to investigate the physical and physiological effects of music on humans. One of these studies was conducted by Hallam (2001) who concluded that that music lies on a continuum from highly stimulating and invigorating to soothing or calming (Hallam, 2001). Another study (Knight and Rickard, 2001) found that when subjects were faced with a cognitive stressor classical music significantly reduced subjective anxiety, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, heart rate, as well as salivary immunoglobulin A (sIgA)
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Stein, Hardy and Totten (1982) performed a task on postgraduate students to see if music and imagery could aid memorising a list of words. Participants were divided into three groups: first group (music and imagery), second group (music and read only) and third group (read only. Results showed that groups using music and imagery; and music and read only scored better than the read only group (Stein, Hardy & Totten, 1982). These results show that background music can be used as a tool to aid memory retention. Further research has shown that classical music has been shown to increase memory capacity in aging adults and combat the effects of Alzheimer's disease and general background music has been shown to increase spatial reasoning and linguistic processing (Young 1999; Angel et al. 2010). Listening to music has shown to lead to changes in cognitive abilities which lead to the creation of the term Mozart effect which refers to the effects of Mozart’s classical music on cognitive function(Rauscher et al.,

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