Accession Number:



Experimental Studies on the Efficiency of Musical Emotions for the Reconciliation of Conceptual Dissonances

Descriptive Note:

Final rept. 1 Sep 2011-10 Aug 2012

Corporate Author:


Personal Author(s):

Report Date:


Pagination or Media Count:



Debates on the origin and function of music have a long history. While some scientists argue that music itself plays a nonadaptive role in human evolution, others suggest that music clearly has an evolutionary role, and point to musics universality. A recent hypothesis suggested that a fundamental function of music has been to help mitigate cognitive dissonance, which is a discomfort caused by holding conflicting cognitions simultaneously. It usually leads to devaluation of conflicting knowledge. The researcher provided experimental confirmation of this hypothesis using a classical paradigm known to create cognitive dissonance. In the present study, cognitive dissonance was experimentally created in 4-year-old children using a well-established method the induced-compliance paradigm. According to previous research, cognitive dissonance similar to that of adults can be confirmed in children as young as 4-years-old using this method. The results of the experiment revealed that exposure to Mozarts music exerted a strongly positive influence upon the childrens performance and enabled them to reconcile the cognitive dissonance they had experienced during the experiment.

Subject Categories:

  • Humanities and History
  • Psychology

Distribution Statement: