Encyclopedia of Clinical Neuropsychology

2011 Edition
| Editors: Jeffrey S. Kreutzer, John DeLuca, Bruce Caplan

Amusia

  • John E. Mendoza
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-0-387-79948-3_701

Current Knowledge

“Music” involves both complex qualities such as familiar melodies, rhythm, or tempo, and more elementary aspects such as discrimination of timbre, pitch, or tone. While lesions of the temporal lobes are fairly consistently implicated, the hemispheric localization of lesions responsible for specific deficits has been more controversial. Music, like language, is composed of individual, temporally sequenced stimuli (musical notes, melodies, tunes), each capable of being analyzed with regard to particular features such as pitch and timbre, functions that would appear to be more in keeping with the suspected operations of the left hemisphere. By contrast, melodies may also be perceived as a gestalt, which is more characteristic of right hemisphere functions. There is evidence that well-trained musicians come to rely more heavily on the left hemisphere for processing certain aspects of music when compared with non-musicians. However, the right hemisphere evidences...

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • John E. Mendoza
    • 1
  1. 1.SE LA Veterans Healthcare System Department of Psychiatry and NeurologyTulane University Medical CenterNew OrleansUSA