Felsenmusick - The Weblog of Daniel Felsenfeld
The Web Log of a Certain Daniel Felsenfeld: Composer, critic, avid reader, aspiring
bon vivant, capricorn, shadowy figure, advice for the lovelorn

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Mozart Effect

Sorry, yet again, for my absence. I've been to Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Boston to hear music of mine, and have been hard at work on a huge, onerous project which threatens to destroy. Combine that with teaching a lot, and you've got a low-priority blogger yet again. Plus it's been cold, and who wants to simply complain?

So back from the grave, I offer a well-reasoned refutation of The Mozart Effect by Will Dowd. His hypothesis: it is not the scientific reason of Mozart that has been proven (only once, according to Dowd) to increase one's intelligence, but the presence of beauty, of sheer enjoyment. Apparently students also responded equally to an audiobook of a Stephen King short story. Is he Mozart's equal? Or is The Mozart Effect (a registered trademark) simply the best post-Amadeus commodification and entombment of classical music. After all, if you believe Susan Jacoby, we are getting progressively stupiderl. So if something proves to make you smarter, will it be avoided? And you'd think that Schoenberg or Webern would make you smart too, since their music is even more "organized." Get ready for my book "The Webern Effect," and for Zell Miller to insist that every child under five be given a daily dose of the Second Viennese School. Now that would be something!

Bad news for Stephen King, it seems! Or good, depending on how you look at it. Maybe he will write me here and let me know his thoughts.

Nice to be back.



Post a Comment

<< Home