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Language, Music, and the BrainA Mysterious Relationship$
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Michael A. Arbib

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780262018104

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: May 2015

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262018104.001.0001

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Communication, Music, and Language in Infancy

Communication, Music, and Language in Infancy

(p.463) 18 Communication, Music, and Language in Infancy
Language, Music, and the Brain

Sandra E. Trehub

The MIT Press

Music, as considered here, is a mode of communication, one that has particular resonance for preverbal infants. Infants detect melodic, rhythmic, and expressive nuances in music as well as in the intonation patterns of speech. They have ample opportunity to use those skills because mothers shower them with melodious sounds, both sung and spoken. Infants are sensitive to distributional information in such input, proceeding from culture-general to culture-specific skills with alacrity. Mothers’ arousal regulatory goals are well known, but their intuitive didactic agenda is often ignored. Regardless of the amiable and expert tutoring that most infants receive, their progress from avid consumers of music and speech to zealous producers is remarkable. Published in the Strungmann Forum Reports Series.

Keywords:   language development in infants, infant communication, infant learning, role of music, melody, rhythm, attachment, bonding

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