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Music and the making of modern science.

Author: Peter Pesic
Publisher: Cambridge : The MIT Press 2014.
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
In the natural science of ancient Greece, music formed the meeting place between numbers and perception; for the next two millennia, Pesic tells us in 'Music and the Making of Modern Science', "liberal education" connected music with arithmetic, geometry, and astronomy within a fourfold study, the quadrivium. Peter Pesic argues provocatively that music has had a formative effect on the development of modern science  Read more...
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Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Peter Pesic
ISBN: 9780262027274 0262027275
OCLC Number: 891031010
Awards: Winner of Winner, 2014 American Publishers Award for Professional and Scholarly Excellence (PROSE Award) in Music & the Performing Arts, presented by the Professional and Scholarly Publishing Division of the Association of American Publishers 2014
Description: 360 pages
Responsibility: Peter Pesic.

Abstract:

In the natural science of ancient Greece, music formed the meeting place between numbers and perception; for the next two millennia, Pesic tells us in 'Music and the Making of Modern Science', "liberal education" connected music with arithmetic, geometry, and astronomy within a fourfold study, the quadrivium. Peter Pesic argues provocatively that music has had a formative effect on the development of modern science - that music has been not just a charming accompaniment to thought but a conceptual force in its own right.0Pesic explores a series of episodes in which music influenced science, moments in which prior developments in music arguably affected subsequent aspects of natural science. He describes encounters between harmony and fifteenth-century cosmological controversies, between musical initiatives and irrational numbers, between vibrating bodies and the emergent electromagnetism. He offers lively accounts of how Newton applied the musical scale to define the colors in the spectrum; how Euler and others applied musical ideas to develop the wave theory of light; and how a harmonium prepared Max Planck to find a quantum theory that reengaged the mathematics of vibration. Taken together, these cases document the peculiar power of music - its autonomous force as a stream of experience, capable of stimulating insights different from those mediated by the verbal and the visual.

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In this magnificent book, trotting from Pythagoras to Max Planck and beyond, Pesic shows us again and again how music informed innovation, and he offers illuminating new insights into nearly three Read more...

 
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