Special Issue on Interactions Between Emotion and Cognition in Music. Coutinho, E. & Timmers, R., editors Psychomusicology: a journal of research in music cognition, 24(1):1-115, American Psychological Association, 3, 2014.
Special Issue on Interactions Between Emotion and Cognition in Music [pdf]Paper  abstract   bibtex   
Welcome to this special issue on interactions between emotion and cognition in music. The combined investigation of emotion and cognition and their interactions has been prominent in general psychology for some years. Nonetheless, we felt that within music research, this area of research has received less systematic attention. With a call for papers related to this theme, our intention was to stimulate more research activity in this area and to develop further our understanding of the ways in which emotions influence music cognition, as well as the ways in which our cognitive appraisal of events, persons and/or objects influence music related emotions. The very good response to our call from authors from a range of countries demonstrated that the theme taps into current developments in music research. A collection of submissions can be found in this issue, while publication of several others can be expected in upcoming issues. From the submissions to this special issue, it became clear that the topic has many ramifications and can be addressed from various perspectives. Together the submissions deepen and broaden our understanding of ways in which cognition and emotion are intertwined in the context of music. The first two articles investigate emotional associations of tonal modulation (Korsakova-Kreyn and Dowling) and emotional associations of musical sequences presented in different tonal modes (Straehley and Loebach), exploring the influence of our tonal knowledge on emotion perception in music. The influence of musical knowledge is also central to the paper by Spitzer and Coutinho who combine music analysis and psychological methods to compare the perception of emotion in Bach’s violin solo sonatas in highly trained experts and regular music connoisseurs. These laboratory based studies on perception of emotion are complemented by an exploration of listeners’ emotional experiences in ecological contexts: Balteş and Miu provide evidence on the importance of empathy and imagery mechanisms for the experience of musical emotions. Using a large-scale online questionnaire, Perdomo-Guevera investigates emotions experienced during music performance and highlights different profiles in performers depending on the context of emotional peak experiences which occur during practice, performance, and/or daily life. Taking an exploratory neuroscientific approach, Leslei, Ojeda and Makeig examine the behavior and brain dynamics related to musical engagement, and demonstrate that musical feelings can be effectively communicated through rhythmic gestures. From a theoretical perspective, Habibi and Damasio explore the link between music and feelings, and suggest the existence of a close tie between music and basic processes of life regulations, which have an impact at the individual level but are also significant promoters of socio-cultural organization. They consider that such a link is responsible for the pervasiveness of music-related experiences and activities. In a short report, Dean and Bailes use time series analysis to show that music-analytical large-scale segmentation can be discriminated in non-musicians' continuous perception of change in music, and suggest ways in which musical structure and agency (such as soloist vs. orchestra, singer vs. accompaniment) may influence those perceived changes. The special issue is complemented by a short report on an international summer school held in Sheffield during 2013, communicating new developments and ongoing activities in this psychology of music hub in the UK. Finally, we are pleased to highlight recently completed doctoral theses that directly or indirectly are related to the topic of the special issue, and which further illustrate the volume and breadth of current research efforts in this area and suggest that the future of the field is in good hands. We hope that the issue will foster further interest and research in this area and show that there is considerable scope for follow up issues on related topics. In particular, influences of emotional responses on the perception and cognition of music is an issue still mostly unexplored. Moreover, current models of emotion and cognition in music are still too often segregated. Renee Timmers & Eduardo Coutinho

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