Essay topic: „critically evaluate pinker’s claim that music is auditory cheesecake” evolutionary cheesecake / auditory cheesecake rich in psychological criteria —> apa referencing guide i don’t want to take any sides : arguments for adaptationist theory and against please read all of the supporting documents! If you find and want to use any other sources than stated here please contact me first with the source you want to use. If you don’t have access to the sources i’ve provided please let me know and i will send them. Essay plan: first part of the discussion: 1. What darwin said about music – sexual selection. Darwin talked about music: music as universal tray — little children good at music without tuition — it seems natural / motherese —> animals – music in the very particular periods —> straight into pinker or talk about darwin and music pinker says that music piggybacks on cognitive and neural skills that evolved for different reasons: talk about his ideas main problem with pinker idea: he says music piggybacks language —> he’s assuming we spoke before we sung which is not possible to prove next: brown’s musical language graphic model —> communicate without language —> half-way between language and music 2. 2nd part of the discussion grooming constraints group size (apes), while vocalization allow group to become much larger and maintain coherence when we make music together we see chemicals associated with bonding important: argue why is music important ? It allows to communicate just as importantly language: —> we can unify and all sing at the same pitch —> tempo, structure —> marching, we can keep in step, we synchronize with the same pitch and notes, in a way we can’t do that with language speech could be to do with communication while music with the the emotional and socio-cultural level tom salo study with children — more social behaviours in musical children groups musical quality in language and the way of communication affects the relationship with babies listening while in belly —> baby recognizing certain musical characteristics when people started making music ? Evidence we have is the 40000years old flute gestalt —> school of perception neuro-imaging —> chills in music – same areas activated as during sex, being angry, sad etc patterns that we all tend to response in music but it’s also very individual, perhaps not evolutionary? 3. End with patel patel’s suggests all humans make fire but do we have a gene for making a fire? Why are we making fire ? Safe, cook food, social aspects: sitting together, making music / developing culture fire gave us all of that but it’s not a biological deaf people and music —> mention and describe the way to use music to give language back to people who lost it —> use music to be able to speak ———————————— key resources that have to be read and used: documents added separately: gestalt psychology + darwin evolution + music and emotion „how the mind works” steven pinker —> key reading! Patel, a.d. (2010). Music, biological evolution, and the brain. In: m. Bailar (ed.), emerging disciplines. Houston, tx: rice university press (pp. 91-144). —> key reading ! The evolution of music: theories, definitions and the nature of the evidence ian cross and iain morley —> key reading patel_2003_language, music, syntax and the brain —> key reading anatomically distinct dopamine release during anticipation and experience of peak emotion to music —> key reading important sources and researches: the origins of music: innateness, uniqueness, and evolution, josh mcdermott, marc d hauser evolution of human music through sexual selection, geoffrey f. Miller trehub 2003: developmental origins of musicality music and evolution: consequences and causes, ian cross patel et al., (2009) syncronisation in non-human animals emotional responses to music: the need to consider underlying mechanisms, patrik n. Juslin thompson, w.f. (2015). Music, thought and feeling: understanding the psychology of music. Oxford university press. Williamson , v. (2014) you are the music. Icon books: london juslin, p.n. & sloboda, j.a. (2011 handbook of music and emotion: theory, research, applications. Oxford university press. Tan, s. L., pfordresher, p. Q., and harré, r. (2010). Psychology of music: from sound to significance. London: routledge and psychology press (chapter on vle) patel, a (2007). Music, language, and the brain, oxford, uk: oxford university press. Huron, d. (2006) sweet anticipation: music and the psychology of expectation, mit. Press, cambridge, mass (chapters on vle). Mithen, s. (2006). The singing neanderthals. 2nd ed. Uk: pheonix, orion books. Sloboda, j. (2005). Exploring the musical mind; cognition, emotion, ability, function. Oxford, uk: oxford university press. Peretz and zatorre (2003). The cognitive neuroscience of music. Oxford, uk: oxford university press. Koelsch_2005_syntax and semantics in music music perception and cognition timothy c. Justus and jamshed j. Bharucha

Steven Pinker’s claim that music is an “auditory cheesecake” has been controversial and has been met with both support and criticism from different perspectives. One argument in support of Pinker’s claim is that music has no obvious survival value and does not seem to have a direct impact on reproductive success. Music has not been found to have any concrete benefits in terms of survival or reproduction, and there is no clear evolutionary explanation for its existence. This supports the idea that music is an evolutionary byproduct, or a pleasurable activity that serves no adaptive function.

However, there are also several arguments against Pinker’s claim that music is simply an evolutionary byproduct. One argument is that music has been present in every known human culture, suggesting that it may serve some universal function or purpose. Music has also been found to have various psychological and social benefits, such as reducing stress and enhancing social bonding, which could potentially have evolved as a result of natural selection.

Another argument against Pinker’s claim is that music may serve as an indicator of fitness or intelligence, as it requires a degree of skill and creativity to produce and perform. This could potentially explain why music is attractive to potential mates, as it serves as a signal of good genes.

Pinker’s claim that music is an evolutionary byproduct is a controversial one that has been met with both support and criticism. While there are arguments in favor of this view, there are also arguments against it, and more research is needed to fully understand the evolutionary function of music.
It is important to note that Pinker’s claim that music is an “auditory cheesecake” is a specific theory within the broader field of evolutionary psychology, which seeks to understand the psychological and behavioral traits that have evolved as a result of natural selection. The concept of “evolutionary cheesecake,” or pleasurable byproducts that serve no adaptive function, is a controversial one within this field, and there are differing views on the extent to which it applies to various psychological traits and behaviors. Ultimately, the question of whether music is an evolutionary byproduct or serves some adaptive function is still a matter of debate, and further research is needed to fully understand the evolutionary basis of this complex and multifaceted human behavior.