Advertisement
YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections

SCIENCE FILE | Science in Brief

Infants Show Ability to Recognize When Music Is Out of Tune

September 05, 1996|From Times staff and wire reports

They can't walk or talk, but babies evidently know what makes good music, according to Harvard researchers. Infants as young as 4 months can tell when music is out of tune--and they react strongly, child psychologists Jerome Kagan and Marcel Zentner report in the Sept. 5 issue of Nature.

The researchers composed two 40-second melodies, one normal and one that, in effect, sounded like the piano was out of tune. When the second was played, "They look away, they cry, they fret and they don't look at the speaker," Kagan said. This probably means musical taste is biologically hard-wired into people, he said.

Advertisement
Los Angeles Times Articles
|
|
|