Monday, January 05, 2009

Music is an earworm. No wait, it is evolutionary cheesecake. Oh, wait, just a minute .... This just in ...

Driving back with friends from Ottawa to Toronto recently, I managed to catch this program where a CBC journalist interviewed humanist neurologist Oliver Sacks on the subject of music. Sacks disagrees with Harvard's Steve Pinker, who claims that music is evolutionary cheesecake but then he stops midway through the program and makes a big pitch for materialism that completely goes against everything else he has said. And of course music could just be an earworm after all ....

The only thing music cannot be, apparently, is a hint that there is more to life than nature red in tooth and claw.

Here's the interview. Funny, these people would pick the Year of Completely Ridiculous Darwin Hagiography to just fall apart intellectually. Some big changes are obviously happening.