Skip to main content Skip to search Skip to search

Medical Neuroscience

The Oxford Handbook of Music and the Brain

edited by Michael Thaut & Donald Hodges

Oxford University Press
Initial publish date
Feb 2021
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Feb 2021
    List Price

Add it to your shelf

Where to buy it


The study of music and the brain can be traced back to the work of Gall in the 18th century, continuing with John Hughlings Jackson, August Knoblauch, Richard Wallaschek, and others. These early researchers were interested in localizing musicality in the brain and learning more about how music is processed in both healthy individuals and those with dysfunctions of various kinds. Since then, the research literature has mushroomed, especially in the latter part of the 20th and early 21st centuries.

The Oxford Handbook of Music and the Brain is a groundbreaking compendium of current research on music in the human brain. It brings together an international roster of 54 authors from 13 countries providing an essential guide to this rapidly growing field.

The major themes include Music, the Brain, and Cultural Contexts; Music Processing in The Human Brain; Neural Responses to Music; Musicianship and Brain Function; Developmental Issues in Music and the Brain; Music, the Brain, and Health; and the Future. Each chapter offers a thorough review of the current status of research literature as well as an examination of limitations of knowledge and suggestions for future advancement and research efforts.

The book is valuable for a broad readership including neuroscientists, musicians, clinicians, researchers and scholars from related fields but also readers with a general interest in the topic.

About the authors

Contributor Notes

Michael H. Thaut serves as Director of the Music and Health Research Collaboratory and holds professorships in music, neuroscience, and rehabilitation science at the University of Toronto, Canada. He was awarded a TIER I CANADA RESEARCH CHAIR in 2017. He is the author of over 200 research publications and author/editor of 7 books. He is past President of the Society for Clinical Neuromusicology, Vice President of the International Society for Music and Medicine, and serves on the Management Committee of the World Federation of Neurorehabilitation. His internationally recognized pioneering research has advanced the basic and clinical neuroscience of music which also has become the scientific foundation for the development of Neurologic Music Therapy as a new treatment model in brain rehabilitation.

Donald A. Hodges served as Covington Distinguished Professor of Music Education and Director of the Music Research Institute (2003-2013) and is currently Professor Emeritus at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Hodges is the author of A Concise Survey of Music Philosophy (2017), co-author of Music in the Human Experience: An Introduction to Music Psychology (2011), contributing editor of the Handbook of Music Psychology and the accompanying Multimedia Companion (1980, 1996), co-editor of Oxford Handbook of Music and the Brain (2019), co-editor of Routledge International Handbook on Music Psychology in Education and the Community across the Lifecourse (forthcoming), and author of numerous papers in music psychology and music education. Recent research efforts have included a series of brain imaging studies of pianists, conductors, and singers using PET and fMRI